National Health Week reminding women to get checked
SOUTH Burnett women are being encouraged by Darling Downs Health to check if they are due for a cervical screening test as part of National Cervical Cancer Awareness Week from 11 to 17 November
Mobile women’s health nurse Kathryn Anning said it took just five minutes for women to get five years peace of mind.
“The test takes five minutes of your time and only needs to be done once every five years, yet about half of Queensland’s eligible women are skipping their cervical screening,” Ms Anning said.
More than 70 per cent of cervical cancers occur in women who have never been screened or are under-screened with the rate of deaths from cervical cancer halved since the National Cervical Screening Program started in 1991.
“The program has started using a new cervical screening test which screens for human papillomavirus, replacing the pap test,” Ms Anning said.
“HPV is the main cause of abnormal cells in the cervix, so the new test has meant women are receiving interventions earlier.
The latest Australian data shows almost all cases of cervical cancer are caused by HPV with women aged 25 to 74 are encouraged to book a cervical screening test two years after their last pap test.
“I urge all women to get up to date with their cervical screening – it’s quick and it may just save your life,” Ms Anning said.
Darling Downs Health has three mobile women’s health nurses who travel the region providing a range of free services including cervical screening tests, breast awareness education, sexual health testing and advice for issues such as continence, menopause, family planning, contraception and general wellbeing.
Residents are encouraged to call their closest hospital and health service to find out the dates for the mobile women health nurses in the area.