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self-collection now available for cervical screening

We know for some people, having your cervical screening can feel uncomfortable or awkward. But did you know you can now take your own sample and it’s just as safe and accurate? 

From 1 July, the self-collection option was introduced to help lower the barrier of booking your cervical cancer screening and helping prevent one of the most preventable cancers.  

The self-collection option allows you to take the sample in a private place or at home and return the swab to your health professional. If you are interested in choosing the self-collection option at your next screening, you can read more about it on the Department of Health website or talk to your health professional.  

In Australia, a cervical screening test finds the infection (HPV) that causes cervical cancer helping doctors to detect early risk signs before cancer starts developing. About 800 Australian women are diagnosed with cervical cancer annually, most of whom had never been screened or were not up-to-date with their screening.  

If you are aged 25-74 and have ever been sexually active, you should have a cervical screening every 5 years regardless of your HPV vaccine status.  

If you are due for your screening, contact your GP or healthcare provider. If you don’t have a preferred healthcare provider, healthdirect can help you find a healthcare provider to book your test with. 

You can also call the National Cancer Screening Register on 1800 627 701 to find out if you are due or overdue for your screening.