Knowsley has been recognised for its commitment to encouraging women to attend cervical cancer screening in the borough.
Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, the UK charity dedicated to women affected by cervical cancer, conducted an audit into the activities of local authorities and clinical commissioning groups’ to improve cervical cancer screening uptake.
The charity found both the council and CCG ‘undertake comprehensive, targeted and sustained work to improve cervical cancer screening’, which is the highest possible rating.
Work includes targeted support for GP practices to identify women who have not attended for screening, supporting the charity’s campaigns including its annual cervical screening awareness week and promoting the Jo’s Trust roadshow visit to Kirkby last summer. The team provided information and support and encouraging attendance at screening.
Women aged 25 to 49 registered with a GP are invited every three years and every five years if aged 50 to 64 for cervical screening. The test detects abnormalities within the cervix that could, if undetected and untreated, develop into cervical cancer.
Cervical screening uptake in England is decreasing and is now at a 20-year low.
Cllr Shelley Powell, Cabinet Member for Public Health, Wellbeing and Customer Services said:
“We’re really pleased the work Knowsley is doing to encourage women to attend their cervical screening invitation has been rated highly by the charity dedicated to women affected by the disease.
“It’s a simple fact that regular cervical screening offers the best protection against developing cervical cancer but unfortunately uptake in Knowsley, and across the country is falling. I’d urge all women to attend their screening appointments, or rebook if you can’t make it or have missed one. It takes minutes and can save lives.”
More information about the audit and results is available in the charity’s report, ‘Cervical Screening in the Spotlight: One year on’