A new report by Cervical Check – The National Cervical Screening Programme has shown that women in a number of counties, including Roscommon, are less likely to attend for cervical screening.
The report also showed that the number of women screened through Cervical Check is at its highest since the programme began in 2008. It also highlighted that women over the age of fifty are also less likely to attend for screening than younger women.
Commenting on the report Dr Grainne Flannelly, Clinical Director of Cervical Check, said
“This report highlights how Cervical Check is going from strength to strength, with almost 79% of the 1.2 million eligible women availing of cervical screening. However, we want to increase this even further to 80%, especially in counties where uptake is lower and among older women.”
Dr Flannelly added: “Cervical cancer takes a long time to develop and often has no symptoms, which is why regular screening is crucial. We urge all women aged 25 to 60 to arrange their first smear test if they’ve never done so, or to check when their next free smear test is due – it’s free, it only takes a few minutes and it could save your life.”
Each year, approximately 300 women in Ireland are diagnosed with cervical cancer, 6,500 women receive treatment for pre-cancerous forms and 90 women die from the disease. However cervical cancer is also highly preventable. Screening aims to detect any changes in the cells of a woman’s cervix, before they become cancerous.
Through Cervical Check, all women aged between 25 and 60 can avail of free cervical screening at over 4,500 registered practitioners of their choice every three or five years, depending on their age. Women can check when their next test is due at www.cervicalcheck.ie or by calling Freephone 1800 45 55 55.