RECENT FIGURES SHOW WOMEN NOT BOOKING LIFE-SAVING CERVICAL SCREENING

More than a third of all eligible women across Nuneaton, Bedworth and North Warwickshire do not have life-saving smear tests.

Last week, Cervical Screening Awareness Week, it was revealed the number of women having checks are below the national average and also the national target.

Latest figures for quarter two in 2019/2020, coverage was 74.8 per cent for those aged between 50 and 64 and coverage was 73.1 per cent for those aged between 25 and 49.

The national average for the same period was 76.6 per cent for those aged between 50 and 64 and coverage was 70.8 per cent for those aged between 25 and 49.

The target is 80 per cent of all women having a smear test.

Bosses at our partner NHS Warwickshire North Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) wanted to use the awareness week to highlight the importance of women still attending their routine cervical screening appointments when invited. This includes during the lockdown.

Dr Imogen Staveley, Chair at NHS Warwickshire North Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said “If you were recently due to have a cervical screening appointment and had your appointment cancelled, you will be contacted to rearrange your appointment. If you receive a new appointment in the post, it is vitally important that you attend the appointment as long as you and no one in your household are suffering with coronavirus symptoms.”

Five million women are invited for cervical cancer screening each year in the UK however, many fail to take up the offer of a smear test.

Dr Staveley added: “This year we see an increased challenge for cervical cancer screening due to the coronavirus outbreak however, services have put measures in place to keep patients safe and we want to encourage woman to attend their appointment.

"Spotting and treating signs at an early stage is key to successful treatment, so having a smear test is not only very important, it can help save lives.”

The Cervical Screening Awareness Week campaign, which ended on June 21, is led by Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust.

Jo’s Trust offers support and information on cervical screening and it has recently increased its online presence through social media and their website to include: sharing experiences of cervical screening, sharing images and videos to let people know where they can find out more, sharing resources of FAQs about cervical screening and coronavirus and sharing links to support services available.

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