28 Aug 2012
More than a quarter of Scottish women are not turning up for cervical cancer screening, a trend that is getting worse.
Statistics out today by ISD Scotland have revealed only 73 per cent of females have attended for the crucial testing in the last three years, a drop of 0.6 per cent from the previous data released.
Women aged between 20 and 60 are invited to the free screening every three years, and there had been hope that some high profile cases of cervical cancer in the media in recent years would encourage more to come forward.
In Scotland’s biggest health board, Greater Glasgow and Clyde, uptake is below 70 per cent, with the nationwide figures showing those aged between 20 and 24 were particularly unlikely to accept the invitation.
Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer among young women, and in total around 300 cases are diagnosed every year.
Scottish Conservative health spokesman and deputy leader Jackson Carlaw MSP said:
“This is a worrying trend across Scotland and it just seems to be getting worse.
“More than a quarter of women are potentially risking their lives by not attending for these vital tests.
“Women often cite their busy lives as a reason for not attending, and with that in mind we should consider extending the availability of these tests, both to evenings and weekends.
“Cervical cancer is treatable if caught early, but we have to give the doctors the chance to do this.”
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