Cancer Council Victoria, with the Australian Centre for the Prevention of Cervical Cancer, has launched a new campaign to raise awareness of the self-collection option for cervical screening.
Cervical cancer is one of the most preventable cancers and can be treated if detected early, yet only an estimated 62 per cent of eligible Victorians are participating in the National Cervical Screening Program.
A Cervical Screening Test (previously known as the Pap Test) is the best way to prevent cervical cancer. The test needs to be done every five years by all women and people with a cervix aged 25-74 who are eligible for cervical screening, even if they have had the HPV vaccine.
Anyone eligible for cervical screening can now choose to self-collect for their next Cervical Screening Test. Self-collection allows people to collect their own vaginal sample with a swab and without the need for a speculum.
The test is quick, easy and done in private at the doctor’s office or other health setting, usually behind a screen or in the bathroom. Importantly, self-collection is just as reliable as a sample collected by a healthcare professional from the cervix using a speculum.
What you can do: If you’re due or overdue for a Cervical Screening Test, speak to your doctor or nurse about the self-collection option. You can also visit www.cancervic.org.au/selfcollection for more information, including a step-by-step guide on how to do the self-collect test.
To find a provider that suits your healthcare needs, use our Cervical Screening Provider Directory or call our experienced cancer nurses for information and support on 13 11 20.