Global Access Program - Cervical Cancer

Making high-risk HPV screening available to women in greatest need

Roche is committed to eradicate cervical cancer globally by

increasing screening accuracy, efficiency and access for all women

Cervical cancer is preventable and eradication is within reach if countries take action now.


Nearly all cases of cervical cancer are caused by high-risk HPV (Human Papillomavirus), a common viral infection transmitted through sexual, skin-to-skin contact. Screening women for high-risk HPV can identify those women who are at risk, before cancer develops, when the disease is easier to treat.
Almost all women will have HPV at some point in their life, and most women’s immune systems will clear the virus without intervention. However, for some women the infection persists and over time can progress into cervical pre-cancer or cancer.

Addressing unmet global need

Cervical cancer is a preventable disease, but is one of the most common cancers in women.
Cervical cancer is one of the greatest threats to women's health. Every minute, one woman is diagnosed with cervical cancer.  In 2018, more than 300,000 women died of cervical cancer. We can do more to address this problem.

Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, cervical cancer, all ages

Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018
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Majority of disease burden is in Low & Middle Income Countries (LMIC)

"Nine out of 10 women who die from cervical cancer live in low- and middle-income countries." 1

"The likelihood that a woman living with HIV will develop invasive cervical cancer is up to five times higher than for a woman who is not living with HIV." 2

Some of the most vulnerable women in our world are dying unnecessarily. In poorer countries, women are often diagnosed with cervical cancer at a more advanced stage, where the opportunity for a cure is low. This is compounded by a lack of access to life-saving treatment in settings where the burden and need are highest.

There is a global call for action to meet proposed cervical cancer prevention goals by 2030.3

90-70-90 Image

"Every country must introduce and scale-up HPV screening for women between 30 and 49 years old, and ensure appropriate treatment and follow-up." 4


Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, 24 September 2018

"Elimination of cervical cancer as a global health problem is within reach for all countries. We know what works, and we now need to scale up our actions to prevent and control this disease." 5


Dr Princess Nono Simelela, Assistant Director-General for Family, Women,
Children and Adolescents, WHO

Prevention Opportunity


"The WHO Draft Global Strategy [for the elimination of cervical cancer as a public health problem] has three main pillars: prevent, screen and treat... To reach elimination, efforts must be aligned and accelerated." 6
Prevention opportunity Flowchart
Roche is currently working with the World Health Organization to obtain Prequalification (PQ) Diagnostics Status for our HPV assays on the cobas® 4800 and cobas® 6800/8800 Systems for use in resource limited settings. Both of the cobas® HPV assays have been granted the Abridged Assessment Review Path by the WHO.


  1. Accessed on 17 February 2020.
  2. unaids website published on 31 MAY 2019 ( Accessed on 17 February 2020.
  3. Accessed on 17 February 2020.
    A world free of cervical cancer
    Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
    United Nations General Assembly, New York, USA
    24 September 2018
    Accessed on 17 February 2020.
    Dr Princess Nono Simelela, Assistant Director-General for Family, Women’s and Children’s Health at WHO   Accessed on 17 February 2020.
  6.  Accessed on 17 February 2020.
  7.  Accessed on 17 February 2020.