Giving Compass' Take:

• Devex reports on the efforts to prevent cervical cancer through screenings and wider use of the HPV vaccine. Funding is still a major challenge, but initiatives like TogetHER are trying to raise more awareness and money.

• What will it take to eradicate this disease for good? One estimate is that the cost will be at least $13.6 billion over ten years, which is a tall order if donors continue to be in short supply. Erasing stigma over the vaccine and using existing technology for screenings will be good first steps in the fight.

Here's more on the efforts to make an impact on cervical cancer in India.

After Pinki Rawat lost her sister-in-law to cervical cancer, she saw the disease as a certain death sentence — and in many places it is. Left untreated, it is an extremely painful way to die: The cervix enlarges, pushes through the vagina into other areas of the body, and ultimately causes women to bleed to death. Cervical cancer kills more than 270,000 women a year, nearly 90 percent of them in countries where the majority of the population doesn’t have access to preventive services.

Rawat lives in India, where over 70,000 women die each year from cervical cancer — more than anywhere in the world. The country has not introduced the vaccine for human papillomavirus, the sexually transmitted virus that is the primary cause of cervical cancer, in its immunization program and has inadequate screening for the disease. Fortunately, Rawat did not become a statistic. She went in for a screening, which revealed precancerous lesions, then was treated with cryotherapy to freeze them away.

Over the past three years in India, Population Services International has piloted the visual inspection with acetic acid method, or VIA, a low-cost solution that uses vinegar to screen for cervical cancer. It is an alternative to the Papanicolaou test, more commonly known as the Pap smear, which has dramatically reduced rates of cervical cancer in high-income countries. But unlike Pap smears, VIAs can be easily implemented in low-resource setting and patients can be treated for precancerous lesions on the spot. Following the PSI pilot, the state of Uttar Pradesh committed to incorporating cervical cancer screenings into its noncommunicable disease clinics.

Read the full article about cervical cancer by Catherine Cheney at Devex International Development.