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Cervical Cancer

Cervical cancer is almost entirely preventable – but screening is vital. Around 80 per cent of Australian women who develop cervical cancer do not get screened regularly as recommended, or have never been screened.

Important information for healthcare professionals – Expansion of self-collection for cervical screening –

From Friday 1 July 2022, the National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP) has expanded screening test options, now offering self-collection of a vaginal sample as a choice to all people participating in cervical screening. 

Attached are key messages to help you to understand what these changes mean for you and your practice/clinic and how to work with the Pathology laboratory that processes your tests.
It would be appreciated if you could disseminate this throughout your networks. You can also find a link to the key messages on our website.

Also on our website is a new page for the general public about self-collection, go to

A range of resources to help you promote self-collection and support your discussions with your clients, in particular Aboriginal women and is available from the National Cervical Screening Program website:

In addition to the above resources, a video interview and FAQs for healthcare providers supporting the updates to the clinical guidelines are now available through Cancer Council Australia.

National Cervical Screening Program Clinical Guidelines: Important changes for women at intermediate risk:

In light of new evidence, changes to the NCSP’s Guidelines for the clinical management of women at intermediate risk will come into effect from 1 February 2021. This follows the Cancer Council Australia Clinical Guidelines review of national data from the renewed program. 

It is now recommended that women with a 12-month follow up HPV (not-16/18) result with LBC prediction negative, pLSIL or LSIL (intermediate risk result) should be recommended to undertake a further HPV follow up test in 12 months’ time following their previous HPV test instead of referral to colposcopy. 

Further information about the changes and the revised cervical screening pathway flowchart is now on the NCSP website

Changes to the clinical management of women at intermediate risk – frequently asked questions.

Resources for health professionals ( including guidelines,template links)
  • The National Cervical Screening Program Guidelines for 1 December 2017 onwards, can now be accessed at the Cancer Council Australia website.
  • Education and Training courses for GPs and practice nurses can be found at Family Planning NSW.
  • The Pathology Test Guide for Cervical and Vaginal testing provides context for using the variations of cervical screening and shows what to write on the pathology request form on the Dept of Health website.
  • Understanding the National Cervical Screening Program Management Pathway: a guide for health professionals is also a useful reference to help ensure the correct test is requested from the Dept of Health website.
  • A comprehensive summary of information about the Renewal of the National Cervical Screening Program, resources for patients and where to go for more details can be found at the Cancer Institute NSW
  • GP Fact Sheet: The Cervical Screening Test for Pregnant Women 


CESPHN can work with practices to ensure female patients are screened through:

  • Support to implement recall and reminder systems
  • Support to ientify patients due and overdue for screening
  • Support to implement recall and reminder systemes
  • Provision of appropriate resources
Information for health professionals to give to consumers