Cervical cancer can be prevented through the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine and the cervical screening “smear test”.
This week, NHS Tameside and Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is backing Cervical Cancer Prevention Week (18-24 January) by encouraging all women and people with a cervix aged 25-64 to ensure their GP practice has their up to date contact details, so they continue to get cervical screening invitations.
They are also asking parents and carers of boys and girls aged 12 to 13 years, who have missed their HPV vaccine offered in Year 8 at school, to contact their school immunisation team or GP practice as their child can still get the vaccination for free on the NHS up until their 25th birthday.
The vaccine is effective at stopping people getting the high-risk types of HPV that cause cancer, including most cervical cancers and some anal, genital, mouth and throat (head and neck) cancers. It's important to have both doses to be properly protected.
Invites to attend screening take place every three years for those aged between 25 and 49, and every five years if aged 50 to 64. Women who are 65 or over and have not been screened since they were 50 or have had recent abnormal tests or have never been screened before, are also still eligible for screening.
Dr Ashwin Ramachandra, Co-Chair at NHS Tameside and Glossop CCG, said:
“It's important to attend cervical screening tests, even if women have been vaccinated for HPV, because the vaccine does not guarantee protection against cervical cancer.
“GP practices are still open and have safety measures in place to protect you from getting COVID-19.”
For more information on cervical cancer prevention visit NHS website https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cervical-cancer/prevention/
For details on how to contact your GP practice visit https://www.tamesideandglossopccg.org/accessingcare