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Cervical screening during Covid-19: Here’s why it’s important to book your test


Image: Getty

Image: Getty

Image: Getty

Covid-19 has changed all our lives. It’s affected our health, our jobs, our freedoms and our connections with others. We’ve all had to stay home and stay apart from friends and loved ones to reduce the risk of catching Covid-19. But it’s important not to lose sight of other aspects of our health too.

Regular screening reduces your risk of developing cervical cancer.

So check the register on the CervicalCheck website and if your screening test is due, book it today. Cervical screening has restarted, and everyone due to be screened in 2020 can now book their test.

You don’t need to wait for your letter

If you’re 25 to 65 and your cervical screening is due, you can book a test with any GP or clinic registered with CervicalCheck. If you’re aged 25 to 29 years, you should be screened every three years. If you’re aged 30 to 65 years, you should be screened every five years. Go ahead and book an appointment today if you know your test is due.

Booking your appointment is easy

Booking and attending for cervical screening only takes a few minutes of your time but it reduces your risk of cancer. First, check the register to see if you are eligible. Next, find a registered clinic on the CervicalCheck website. And finally, book the next available appointment online.

Screening has changed

Next time you come for screening, you'll be tested for the HPV virus. HPV cervical screening is a new way of cervical screening. The test looks to see if you have any of the high-risk types of human papillomavirus (HPV) that cause cervical cancer.

Most cases of cervical cancer are caused by HPV. HPV is a common group of viruses passed on through skin-to-skin contact during sexual activity. Most people get HPV at some time but our immune system usually clears the virus within about 18 months. If not, it can cause changes in the body’s cells that can lead to cancer.

HPV cervical screening can find nine in 10 of these cell changes. Regular cervical screening is the best way to see if you’re at risk of developing cervical cancer in the future.

It is safe to attend cervical screening

Your GP or clinic is working hard to offer cervical screening. They are making sure all the necessary safety measures are in place to keep staff and patients safe during cervical screening.

You may be asked to follow certain instructions, such as waiting outside until it's time for your appointment, and wearing a face covering. You can book cervical screening with any GP or clinic on the CervicalCheck register.

Screening is quick

Cervical screening is a quick and effective way to check the health of your cervix. The test usually lasts for about five minutes and in many GP practices and clinics, you will be able to ask for a female GP or nurse to take your screening test if that makes you feel more comfortable.

Some people find the screening test slightly uncomfortable or embarrassing, but for most people it's not painful. If you find the test painful, tell the GP or nurse as they may be able to reduce your discomfort.

Here’s what you should do next

  • Check the register to see if you are eligible
  • Find a registered clinic on the CervicalCheck website
  • Book your screening appointment and attend
  • Accept your appointment even if it is a few weeks away

Check when your next cervical screening test is due or find a registered GP or clinic on the CervicalCheck website today.