Sat, 11 Jul 2020
Cervical screening patients who had their appointments cancelled in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak are being contacted for rescheduling by GPs in Berkshire West.
Women between the ages of 25 and 64 are entitled to a screening.
Depending on the age of the patient, the procedure can be arranged every three or five years.
The test lasts just a few minutes and regular screening can help stop cervical cancer before it starts by preventing potentially harmful cells from developing.
Screening is believed to save 5,000 lives every year.
Berkshire West Clinical Commissioning Group cancer lead Dr Kajal Patel said: "It was unfortunate that during the Covid outbreak the NHS had to pause some services to dedicate itself to caring for patients with the virus.
"However, now the numbers are falling we can turn our attention back to other really important work like cancer screening and I'd urge everyone who is eligible for a test, or had theirs postponed during Covid, to please make an appointment.
"I know some women are reluctant to go for a test.
"It could be that they are nervous about what happens, worried in case the test shows up some abnormalities or it could be for cultural reasons.
"We want to reassure them that the tests are generally straightforward, they’re carried out by very understanding and professional healthcare staff and they really can be a matter of life and death."