Wiltshire Council are among the 20% of local authorities praised by Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, for comprehensive and targeted work to improve cervical screening attendance in Wiltshire. However, uptake of cervical screening is decreasing and currently at a 20 year low nationally – which leaves women at an increased risk of developing cancer.
Ben Anderson, portfolio holder for public health, said: “We know that cervical screening saves lives. It’s very important women are encouraged to attend their screening appointments so that any changes can be detected and investigated at an early stage. Being recognised like this gives us confidence that we’re doing things the right way. Prevention is always better than cure and we’re determined to do everything we can to ensure cervical screening attendance continues to rise in Wiltshire.”
Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust recently published a report which highlighted areas, including Wiltshire, that have implemented good practice to improve cervical screening uptake. It urges other CCGs, local authorities and GP practices across England to work together to plan activities and interventions to increase cervical screening coverage.
Dr Richard Sandford-Hill, chair of Wiltshire clinical commissioning group and GP at Market Lavington Surgery, added: “It is really important to continue to encourage women in Wiltshire to attend regular screenings. This allows us to pick up pre-cancerous changes in the cervix before they develop into cancer, meaning these cells can then be treated. Screening only takes a few minutes and can save many lives, so please do attend your screening appointment when invited.”