DoH to boost awareness of cervical cancer, but lower screening age ruled out

The DoH is to launch an awareness campaign for GPs and practice nurses to help them spot cervical cancer symptoms earlier in young women.

Photograph: Istock
Photograph: Istock

The announcement comes as the DoH confirms that the screening age for cervical cancer will not be lowered below 25.

There had been calls to lower the screening age to 20 following the high-profile case of Jade Goody.

But a review, carried out by the independent Advisory Committee on Cervical Screening (ACCS), agreed unanimously that there should be no change in the screening age as evidence showed that earlier screening could do more harm than good.

The ACCS also highlighted concerns that young women who present to their GPs with cervical cancer symptoms are not always being given appropriate advice.

It recommends an awareness campaign for GPs and practice nurses and an audit of all young women diagnosed with cervical cancer looking at their symptoms prior to diagnosis.

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