Pap smear is medical procedure that plays a vital role in the early detection and prevention of cervical cancer, that can be effectively treated if caught in its early stages. Cognizant of this, the Provincial Government of Bataan, through the Provincial Women’s Commission (PWC), in cooperation with Bataan General Hospital and Medical Center, Bataan Obstetrical and Gynecological Society (BOGS) and KABALIKAT, conducted free Pap smear to 200 women from different municipalities in the province, at the 5th floor of BGHMC yesterday, September 27.
During the lay forum, Dr. Cecille Louise Cercado and Dr. Reynerio Manipol discussed the risk factors and symptoms of cervical cancer, and explained that Pap smear screens for abnormal cervical cells, which can be an early sign of cervical cancer or precancerous conditions, allowing for early intervention and prevention, which is why it is important for women to undergo Pap smear every three years once they become sexually active.
Aside from the free Pap smear, the beneficiaries also underwent breast examination, bone scan, and hemoglobin determination.
Dr. Glory Baltazar, Medical Center Chief II of BGHMC, emphasized the commitment of the province in prioritizing women’s health through such initiatives. Mrs. Vicky Garcia, Chairperson of the Bataan Provincial Women’s Commission, who stepped foot for the first time at the Gov. Enrique T. Garcia Jr. Memorial Auditorium, named after her late husband, expressed her admiration over the many developments of BGHMC, something her late husband had always envisioned. The volunteer obstetricians were from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Bataan Medical Society, and BOGS, and among those who graced the program were Chief of Medical and Professional Staff II Dr. Luis Hizon, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Chair Dr. Juvy Sampang, and Dr. Salud Bagalso along with the officers of the PWC.
The free Pap smear program is an annual activity of the PWC that started in 2006, but was temporarily suspended in 2020 until last year due to COVID-19.