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26th Jun, 2022

Take the test say health chiefs as cervical cancer campaign launched

A MAJOR new campaign to increase the number of women attending their cervical screening has been launched by Public Health England (PHE) in the West Midlands.

‘Cervical Screening Saves Lives’ aims to encourage women to respond to their cervical screening invitation letter, and if they missed their last screening, to book an appointment at their GP practice.

Every year in the West Midlands, around 276 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer, with about 81 dying from the disease annually.

It is estimated that if everyone attended screening regularly, 83 per cent of cervical cancer cases could be prevented.

The campaign comes as new figures show screening is at a 20-year low, with one in four eligible women – those aged 25 to 64 – in the UK not attending their test.The screening rate for the West Midlands is 70.9 per cent, significantly below the national standard of 80 per cent.

Dr Helen Carter, director of Healthcare Public Health at PHE West Midlands, said: “Around 2,600 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year in England.

“Annually around 690 women die from cervical cancer.

“We know that one in four eligible women don’t take up their cervical screening invitation, so 25 per cent of the eligible women in the West Midlands are potentially putting their lives at risk.

“Cervical screening can stop cancer before it starts by preventing potentially harmful cells developing.

“So we’re saying to women in the West Midlands, don’t ignore your cervical screening invite. If you missed your last cervical screening, please book and appointment with your GP now.”

For further information about cervical screening visit www.nhs.uk/cervicalscreening.

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