ACCF’s work in Solomon Island commenced in 2011 and after many years of collaboration and direct involvement between ACCF, people on the ground and the Ministry of Health and Medical Services, a successful application was made to GAVI for a Demonstration HPV Vaccination Program in the Solomon Islands. That 2 year demonstration Program began in April 2015 with GAVI providing Gardasil vaccine for some 8,000 school girls over 2 year plus money to help carry out the program. The initial demonstration vaccination program provided vaccines to girls aged 9 to 12 years in the provinces of Honiara and Isabel
With a lot of hard work from the Solomon Islands health workers everything went according to plan. Because of the success, ACCF then worked to ensure that GAVI support was again available to introduce a genuine national cervical cancer vaccination. Eventually the Solomon Islands National HPV Vaccination Program launched in May 2019, with 40,000 girls being vaccinated in the initial year and approximately an 8,000 new cohort of girls every year after that.
ACCF continues to support awareness, screening and treatment programs across the Solomon Islands as part of our ultimate goal to eliminate cervical cancer in the developing world. The next project which is in the planning phase, but has been temporarily delayed by COVID-19, is to commence cervical screening using HPV testing, as is available to Australian women. The initial site will be Munda in the Western Province by mid 2021.