County council praised for improving cervical screening uptake

News.
News.

Lincolnshire County Council has been praised for its efforts to help improve cervical screening uptake in the county.

A new report by Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust has been published, highlighting activities and action that local authorities are undertaking to increase cervical screening coverage.

Cervical screening uptake in England is decreasing and is now at a 20-year low.

One of the key findings of the report is that 20 per cent of local authorities have undertaken comprehensive and targeted work to improve cervical screening attendance, including Lincolnshire County Council.

Carol Skye, Commissioner for Lincolnshire Sexual Health Services said: “Cervical screening saves lives, including my own!

“One way that we’re encouraging cervical screening uptake is by offering the test opportunistically through sexual health clinics, especially to vulnerable women.

“We do this on an ad hoc basis rather than offering it to everyone as we would still encourage women to arrange their cervical screening through their GP so they will be reminded regularly when they’re due to attend screening.

“The work we’re doing to improve uptake of cervical screening is in partnership with NHS England and Cancer Research UK.

“NHS England are also looking at new ways to expand the offer and provide greater choice for women.”

Coun Patricia Bradwell, executive councillor for adult care and health at the county council, said: “Cervical screening is a really important way of detecting any early changes that could lead to cancer, and enable treatment as soon as possible.

“I would encourage all eligible women to look after themselves and get screened.”

The report highlights examples of good practice, such as in Lincolnshire, and recommends that NHS organisations and local authorities work together to further increase cervical screening coverage.

This includes direct GP engagement, local incentive schemes and target setting, communications and awareness raising campaigns, training clinical and non-clinical staff, work in the community, and increasing access.