Thematic area

  • Health

Project type

  • Research
  • Third Mission


  • • Kingdom of eSwatini (South Africa)


  • 18 months


  • Cabrini Ministries Swaziland
  • Eswatini Ministry of Health
  • Cepheid
  • Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
  • Cabrini Health (Australia)

Scientific supervisor

  • Elisabetta Tanzi
  • Mario Carlo Raviglione

Founded by

  • Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
  • Cabrini Health (Australia)
  • Cepheid

Snapshot of project

·        Prevent (i) cervical cancer by early diagnosis of high-risk (HR) HPV infection and (ii) potentially pre-cancerous lesions through current standards used in eSwatini (VIA examination);
·        Generate evidence to support policymakers in implementing innovative public health interventions, such as a urine-based HR-HPV infection screening through rapid molecular technology; and
·        Build local research and technical capacity in a rural health clinic that can be utilized later for other purposes (e.g., HPV vaccination rollout).
The Project is composed of four different studies with specific objectives:
1)     General study
Assess the feasibility and sustainability of urine-based screening for HPV infection
Increase girls and women’s participation in cervical cancer screening
2)     Embedded study
Compare results obtained from fresh urines VS. cervix brushes VS. Pap smear
3)     Cost-effectiveness study
Estimate cost-effectiveness of the intervention in a rural context compared to current practices
4)     Acceptability study
Confirm acceptance of, and identify potential obstacles to, urine-based screening.
– 2,500 girls and women aged between 12 and 49 years in the catchment area of the St. Philip’s Clinic, Lubombo, eSwatini;
– Three among laboratory technicians and assistants trained to analyse samples with GeneXpert;
– Four Clinic staff members trained for data collection using REDCap.
Role of UNIMI
Design of the project, training, data collection and analysis, local support. Assessment and complementation of data collected on the field.