Tags: bush | africa | zambia | trip

Bush and Wife Laura in Zambia Promoting Cancer Initiative

Friday, 06 Jul 2012 10:51 AM

By Patrick Hobin

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Former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura are wrapping up a weeklong trip to Africa where they are promoting cervical cancer detection and treatment programs for Zambian women, The Hill reported.

Bush worked with Zambians to refurbish a clinic used to screen, diagnose, and treat cervical cancer and in the capital of Lusaka, he designated a cancer center at a university teaching hospital and met with governmental and health care leaders.

Zambia has the second highest number of cervical cancer cases in the world and many Zambian women infected with the disease are also living with HIV and have weakened immune systems. In Botswana, he launched a similar program aimed at combating cancer.

The program, a partnership among the Bush Institute, the U.S. government, Susan G. Komen for the Cure and others, was launched in Zambia last year.

“I do want to be able to say that on this particular trip, that myself and friends have left behind a clinic in hopes to inspire others to come and refurbish clinics as well and to encourage the Zambian government to make sure there are the healthcare works necessary to make sure the clinic doesn't sit there empty,” Bush said in a video at an event announcing the renovation of Ngungu Health Center.

The Bushes, who made African aid a focus during their time in the White House, are scheduled to return to the U.S. today, which is the former president’s birthday.

Bush has raised more than $85 million for cervical cancer programs through his George W. Bush Center and other partner organizations, Catholic Online reported. Bush said his goal is to build upon one of the great bipartisan achievements of his presidency.

"We care because we believe that to whom much is given, much is required," Bush said, according to Catholic Online. "And those of us, who live in America, live in the most blessed nation ever and therefore when we see suffering, we ought to act."

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