Cervical cancer, associated with high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, is a significant public health problem in South Carolina. The state ranks 14th in cervical cancer mortality overall, but African American and rural women are more likely to die of cervical cancer. This disparity in cervical cancer mortality persists despite a 75% reduction in mortality since the introduction of the Pap test.
Several SCRHRC researchers were involved in the December issue of the Journal of the South Carolina Medical Association, which highlights cervical cancer prevention and control efforts. Dr. Saundra Glover, Associate Director of the SCRHRC, led the effort to combine the resources in the academic community and partnerships with the community. One of the postdoctoral fellows at the Center, Jessica Bellinger, authored an article describing the results of a population-based survey of HPV and cervical cancer in the state. Jessica Bellinger is also involved in community-based programs as part of the Call to Action: Preventing Cervical Cancer Among African-American Women, highlighted in the Summer 2009 issue of “In Our Hands” from the South Carolina Cancer Disparities Community Network. Study results were presented at the NRHA Multicultural and Minority Conference in Memphis, TN.
More information about the cervical cancer issue of the Journal of the South Carolina Medical Association can be found here (http://www.sc.edu/news/newsarticle.php?nid=652&pg=1) and here (www.sph.sc.edu/health_disparities). Details about the community efforts with the SC Cancer Disparities Community Network can be found here (http://sccdcn.sph.sc.edu/newsletters/index.htm).