To mark cervical cancer prevention week, Source BioScience, providers of cervical cancer screening technology, joins the National Health Service Cervical Screening Programme (‘NHSCSP’) and charities such as Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust and MacMillan Cancer Support, in urging all eligible women to respond to their invitation for a cervical screening test. Cervical cancer is a preventable disease through the early detection of changes to the cells in the cervix identified during routine cervical screening.
The UK leads the way by having the best organised cervical cancer screening programme in the world and sets the standard for other countries in the early detection of cervical cancer and, therefore, treatment. But even with this premier standard of care, there are still over 2,900 women in the UK diagnosed with cervical cancer every year and around 20% of women in the UK still do not attend cervical screening appointments.
There is therefore still a huge need to raise public awareness of how cervical cancer can be prevented by early screening and detection and urge women to be tested. Women should also be aware of any unusual symptoms such as irregular bleeding.
Wilma Anderson, Business Manager at Source BioScience observed, “As a previous employee of the NHS and with 11 years’ experience looking down the microscope at cervical slides, I know this test can pick up small changes in the cells that, if untreated, may progress into cervical disease. All women should accept their invitation for their test when they receive it. The test is simple and painless and it can and does save lives as this disease has good treatment prospects if caught early.”
Supplying the BD SurePath™ cytology technology to the NHSCSP since 2002, Source BioScience provides approximately 50% of all cervical cancer screening kits used by NHS Hospital Trusts and cytology laboratories in England and Wales. In 2012, approximately 2 million samples were analysed using the BD SurePath™ platform. Source BioScience is also working closely with the NHSCSP in the implementation of automated imaging for cervical slides. The BD FocalPoint™ technology reduces by up to 25% the number of tests which require primary manual screening, thereby speeding up the turnaround time for patients to receive their results.
Nick Ash, CEO of Source BioScience, added: “There is a major benefit to women in attending their routine cervical screening test, and we recognise the excellent work of organisations such as Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust and the NHSCSP in raising the awareness of this disease and the need for testing. Their efforts help to ensure this disease can be caught early and treated. Without them, the incidence of cervical cancer would undoubtedly be much higher.”