Thursday, 15 May 2014

MP praises local cervical cancer campaigner

Local MP Katy Clark last week used a House of Commons debate to praise the work of Ardrossan-based cervical cancer campaigner Suzanne Fernando.

The UK Parliament was debating issues raised by the tragic death of Merseyside teenager Sophie Jones who died of cervical cancer after being misdiagnosed and denied access to a smear test.

During her contribution, Katy Clark highlighted the work Suzanne Fernando has done in promoting cervical cancer screening services, as well as her current work organising a local ‘Walk for Fun’ event for Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust. The North Ayrshire & Arran MP said, “Suzanne Fernando was diagnosed with cervical cancer when she was pregnant, and describes herself as a survivor of cancer.

“She has campaigned tirelessly on the issue throughout my time as a Member of Parliament, on many different aspects of the disease: ensuring that people use cervical cancer screening services and get smears; attending local schools and encouraging girls to get the HPV [Human papillomavirus] vaccination; and in fundraising work.”

Ms Clark also referred to Suzanne’s role as Scotland’s first campaigns ambassador for Cancer Research UK, adding, “She has set up a cervical cancer support group in Ayrshire, which provides people with advice on the disease at any stage.

“We should pay tribute to all the women throughout the country who have experience of cervical cancer and who work to ensure that others do not go through what they have been through, that the condition is identified early and prevented and that people get the treatment to which they are entitled.”

The Labour MP called for all women to have access to a smear test at a time of their choosing.

As part of Cervical Cancer Awareness Week, Suzanne Fernando will take part in a 5km ‘Walk for Fun’ at Eglinton Park in Kilwinning on June 15.

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