Women in Enfield encouraged to book smear tests

New council-run campaign aims to highlight the importance of screening for cervical cancer

credit Public Health England
credit Public Health England

Women in Enfield are being encouraged to book a smear test in a new borough-wide campaign to raise awareness of cervical cancer.

The campaign – which includes posters, billboards, social media posts and leaflets – has been initiated following a motion at an Enfield Council meeting agreed by councillors last year.

The motion was drawn up by Winchmore Hill councillor Maria Alexandrou, who also helped organise a conference on cervical cancer in 2021. It highlighted that while there are 3,200 new cases and 850 deaths from cervical cancer every year, smear tests can help detect it early, giving women a greater chance of recovery.

However, one-in-four women put themselves at risk by missing their regular smear tests. Cancer Research UK says 99.8% of cases are preventable.

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Following the launch of the new awareness campaign in Enfield, Cllr Alexandrou said: “Cervical cancer is preventable and attending your free screening can help save your life.

“Too many young women have lost their lives and that is why I am campaigning to raise awareness.”

The Conservative councillor added: “Smear tests are done every three years. I encourage everyone with a cervix who is due for an appointment to book as soon as possible.”

NHS data from 2020 shows that in Enfield only 66% of women aged 25 to 49 went for smear tests. The figure is higher at 76.5% for those aged over 50. The national target is 80%.

Possible symptoms of cervical cancer including abnormal bleeding (bleeding between periods or after sex) and abnormal discharge.

To find out more about cervical cancer screening:

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