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PAHO praises El Salvador’s vaccination program

San Salvador, Apr 28 (Prensa Latina) The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) praised the existing vaccination program in El Salvador, local media reported today.

El Salvador will be the first country in the sub-region to eliminate cervical cancer, mainly caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).

Countries such as Panama, El Salvador and Costa Rica have an extensive vaccination and prevention strategy against the HPV virus.

A recent PAHO report indicated that vaccines saved at least 154 million lives in the past 50 years, the equivalent of six lives every minute.

A press release specified that this estimate is limited because the study only covers vaccination against 14 diseases, including diphtheria, hepatitis B, measles, whooping cough, tetanus and yellow fever.

In the case of El Salvador, the Ministry of Health included last year new immunization doses in the national program, such as hepatitis A virus vaccine, measels, pneumococcal 23 and hexavalent, HPV and Covid-19. This renewal of the scheme will benefit more than 48,000 children from six months to 11 months, more than 498,000 children from one to four years of age, more than 50,000 pregnant women, 50,000 health professionals, 150,000 people with chronic diseases and 818,000 senior citizens, according to statistics.

PAHO sources affirm that the HPV vaccine is one of the most important, since figures from the organization indicate that cervical cancer is the second most common cancer among women in Central America.

It is expected that 14 million women in this region could be identified with this disease in the next 15 years.