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Cervical screening

The NHS Cervical Screening Programme has made a significant impact on cervical cancer mortality since it was established in 1988, saving an estimated 5,000 lives a year. However, coverage is at a 20-year low. Figures published by NHS Digital show that, at 31 March 2018, the percentage of eligible women (aged 25 to 64) screened adequately was 71.4%.

To help address this issue, in March 2019 PHE launched its first national multimedia cervical screening campaign. The campaign will:

  • highlights the risks of cervical cancer
  • highlights the preventative benefits of the often misunderstood screening test
  • encourages women of all ages to respond to their screening invitation
  • encourages women to consider booking an appointment if they have missed previous invitations
  • aims to tackle issues of fear and embarrassment

To access up to date information on signs, symptoms and treatment guidance click on the links below:

Key links –

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence:  NICE guideline!scenario

Public Health England (2016b) NHS Cervical Screening Programme Guidance for the training of cervical sample takers. Public Health England. [Free Full-text]

Public Health England (2019) Cervical screening: primary HPV screening implementation – This guidance is to aid local providers of the NHS Cervical Screening Programme in implementing high-risk human papillomavirus (hrHPV) testing.

Public Health England (2019) – Having a smear test – An easy guide about a health care test for women aged 25-64 (PHE publications gateway number GW-296) England (2019)

S!referencesupporting women with learning i

Jo’s Trust

Additional resources:

Cervical screening: leaflet for women considering screeningThis leaflet is sent to all women invited for NHS cervical screening.

Department of Health and Social care (2018) HPV vaccine to be given to boys in England.