Fiji’s Ministry of Health is actively exploring the acquisition of an HPV molecular testing machine as a replacement for the current Pap smear approach in cervical cancer screening at hospitals. Cervical cancer ranks as the second most prevalent cancer among women in Fiji, prompting Medical Scientist Navneeta Nair at CWM Hospital to emphasize the critical need for cutting-edge technologies. Nair highlights that the proposed new machine would offer the advantage of simultaneously testing multiple samples, thereby addressing the current constraint of one-at-a-time testing.
Unfortunately, due to budget constraints, limited resources, and other factors, we currently face limitations in our ability to perform comprehensive testing. However, we are optimistic about the future when molecular testing becomes more accessible. With this advancement, we can conduct testing on a larger scale, eliminating the manual process of testing one sample at a time, which is currently resource-intensive.
The Ministry of Health is actively considering seeking assistance from countries such as Australia and New Zealand, which have already embraced these advanced technologies for healthcare purposes.