Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Ciara Wilson is collaborating with The Black Women’s Health Imperative (BWHI) and Hologic’s Project Health Equality to remind Black women to guard themselves against cervical cancer.
The “Cerving Confidence” initiative encourages women to stay on top of their well-woman exams, according to a news release. Hologic’s Project Health Equality’s website explained that the initiative offers a combination of research, education, and access to address the disparity in healthcare that Black and Hispanic women receive. According to a report by Kaiser Family Foundation, there is a notable difference in the care that women of color receive, compared to their White counterparts.
According to BWHI, it is the sole national nonprofit dedicated to advancing health equity and social justice for Black women. Health advocates are raising awareness with Wilson to share a simple way for Black women to take care of their health.
Ciara is serving facts and “cerving confidence” to Black women across America with a new campaign to encourage them to see their OB/GYN for annual appointments and build awareness of the impact cervical cancer has on Black women. https://t.co/hZyndLIMYW
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) June 22, 2021
“As Black women, we need to commit to total self-care, and one of the ways we can do that is by taking care of our health inside and out,” Wilson said. “Through the Cerving Confidence initiative, I want to level up conversations about health and address disparities by giving Black women the inspiration and information they need to get a Pap test to screen for cervical cancer.”
Per the press release, COVID-19 may have widened health disparities, since the pandemic caused many women to delay their well-woman exams. This can also lead to an advanced cervical cancer diagnosis or more serious outcomes. Research already indicates that Black women who live in the U.S. are twice as likely to die from cervical cancer than White women. Linda Goler Blount, MPH, president and CEO of BWHI, added that too many women are dying from preventable cervical cancer. However, screenings can protect women who take this preventive measure.
This is the message that Ciara is promoting through her platform.
“I want to encourage women to understand the importance in this case how you can serve confidence and get ahead of everything. The cool thing is you can prevent cervical cancer. How amazing is that?” Ciara said to CBS News. “Go out there and make an appointment. Put yourself first, you have to. Putting yourself first is everything. Then you can take off and be your best self in every way possible.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated that screening tests can be conducted in a clinic or doctor’s office. A Pap smear looks for precancers, while the HPV test checks for the virus (human papillomavirus) which may cause cell changes. Women should begin getting Pap smears at 21 years old, according to the CDC’s recommendations.
You can see Ciara’s public service announcement and CBS News video by clicking this link.