Message From the Coordinator

Female sex workers in Nigeria are often referred to as commercial sex workers (CSWs). In the last decades, commercial sex workers have been recognized to have an increased prevalence of cervical lesions due to their high risk behavior. Studies have however indicated that having multiple sexual partners may lead to high transmission of human papillomavirus. Approximately 291million women worldwide are HPV DNA carriers. It has also been recognized that knowledge of the prevalence of cervical lesions in commercial sex workers may lead to improved prevention. The world health organization has been involved in the distribution of materials, sensitization and organization of meaningful programs in the developing world for the care and wellbeing of the commercial sex workers in Africa. Gaps in knowledge regarding the exact nature of commercial sex, stigmatization of sex workers and failure to identify and work closely with clients have prevented many communities from developing effective prevention campaigns for sex workers and their clients. For this reason, the Sexual Health Concerns for Commercial Sex Workers (SHCCSW) was established primarily to screen, cater for the sexual gates of this vulnerable group and provide reorientation. Summarily, the SHCCSW was conceptualized for the following reasons:

  • Vast opportunity for transmissible infections amongst the CSWs is eminent 
  • Lack of awareness of the etiology of abnormal cervical lesions
  • Professional ties with cervical cancer
  • CSWs serve as reservoir/ host for the spread of sexually transmitted infections 
  • Negative influences of the CSWs on their immediate environment
  • Uncontrollable insanity amongst the CSWs
  • Lack of respect for human dignity
  • Violent abuse of the female sexual gates
  • Loss of moral values according to the norms in Nigeria

PARTNER LABORATORY FOR MOLECULAR STUDIES

SNP Molecular Genetics Diagnostic & Research Centre, Mulund West, Mumbai, India