Cervical Screening Saves Lives Campaign

Cervical Screening Saves Lives Campaign

Public Health England (PHE), with the support of NHS England has launched a new national multimedia campaign to encourage all eligible women to not ignore their cervical screening invite or if they have missed their last cervical screening, to book an appointment with their GP practice.

Two women die every day from cervical cancer and Public Health England and the NHS have requested help to reduce this number.

Cervical screening can stop cancer before it starts by checking the health of the cervix and preventing any potentially harmful cells from developing. The NHS Cervical Screening Programme has made a significant impact on cervical cancer mortality since it was established in 1988 and screenings save an estimated 5,000 lives per year, which is why it’s vital we all support and encourage women to attend.

However, the number of eligible women attending their tests is at a 20-year low and coverage is at its lowest amongst women aged 25-35. Figures published by NHS show that, at 31 March 2018, the percentage of eligible women (aged 25 to 64) screened adequately was 71.4%. The national target for cervical screening coverage is 80% with coverage at its lowest amongst those aged 25 – 35.

About the campaign:

It’s not unusual for women to feel a bit uneasy about going to their cervical screening, however the thought is normally worse than the reality. The campaign seeks to put minds at ease and reassure women that screenings are nothing to be worried about and can stop them developing cervical cancer.

The campaign focuses on the important relationships in women’s lives, reminding them of all the people that want them to be healthy and well.

TV ads have been running throughout March featuring the voice of a woman thanking the friends and family who have reminded her about her upcoming screening. PHE/NHS are keen to keep the momentum going and continue to spread the word.

Target audience:

The target audience is all eligible women aged 25 – 64, and in particular women aged 25 – 35 as they are the least likely to currently book their cervical screening check.

There are also some small sub-groups who are disproportionately less likely to participate – including women from ethnic minorities, people from lower socio-economic backgrounds, and lesbian and bisexual women. The campaign is designed to include these groups.

The campaign:

  • Highlights and Reminds women of the risk of cervical cancer.
  • Highlights the importance and preventative benefits of screening and the often misunderstood screening test.
  • Dispels feelings of unease or embarrassment around getting screened.
  • Encourages women to respond to their cervical screening invites.
  • Encourage women to consider booking an appointment if they have missed previous invitations.
  • Aims to tackle barriers to screening highlighted by research, issues such as fear and embarrassment.
  • Shares helpful advice on what to expect during a screening and tips on how to make it a more comfortable experience.

Campaign call to action:

  • Cervical screening saves lives – encourage the people that you know and love to get screened if they are overdue a test.
  • Don’t ignore cervical screening invitations.
  • If you or someone you know has missed their last screening, book an appointment with the GP practice now.
  • For further information, please visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cervical-screening/

Why support for the campaign is needed:

The more women we can encourage to get their screening done, the better. That’s why we need everyone’s help to spread the word.

Campaign Resources:

Additional resources such as downloadable and hard copy, posters (copies attached), pocket cards, leaflets, stickers, toolkits, digital tools – social media toolkit and digital screens, are available from the PHE Campaign Resource Centre at:-


Branches, Regions and Regional Health and Safety Forums can either download or order more materials from this site should they need to.

‘Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust’ 

Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust is the only UK charity dedicated to women, their families and friends affected by cervical cancer and cervical abnormalities. As Branches and Regions will know the CWU Health, Safety & Environment Department established a close working relationship with ‘Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust’ in 2009 and has worked with the charity and supported their campaigns since then and proudly we are the only Trade Union listed with our Logo on their ‘Time To Test’ supporter’s page. The CWU has been active in campaigning on this issue for years, supporting Cervical Screening Awareness Week and we will be supporting it again this year, continuing our strong working links with ‘Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust’ as we have done in the past, supporting the ‘HPV Vaccination campaign’, ‘Put Yourself in The Picture’ campaign, the ‘Smear For Smear’ campaign and we are registered supporters of the ‘Time to Test’ campaign with the CWU Logo on the Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust Website.

Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust was established in 1999 by James Maxwell after his wife Jo passed away from cervical cancer. I have met the late Jo Maxwell’s sister and the Jo’s Trust Chief Executive Robert Music on several occasions – both have thanked CWU for its support and we intend to continue that working relationship.

Contact Details for further information, resources and Helpline:-

Address: Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust 7-14, Great Dover St, London SE1 4YR

Phone: 020 3096 8100

Helpline: 0808 802 8000

Email: info@jostrust.org.uk

Website: https://www.jostrust.org.uk/

Cervical Screening Awareness Week 2019

The dates for Cervical Screening Awareness Week 2019 are 10 – 16 June 2019 and the intention is to support the campaign and run a co-ordinated campaign with the ‘Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust’ Charity across the CWU. Further information and updates will be published in due course.

Further information and support can be found at:


2 x Cervical Screening Campaign Posters (Downloadable pdfs).

We hope all Branches and Regional Health and Safety Forums will support this important campaign.

[Previous Cervical Cancer Campaign LTBs & Resources: 937/10, 938/10, 1064/10, 171/11, 172/11, 200/11, 036/12, 036/14, 242/14, 062/15, 370/16.]

Yours sincerely


Dave Joyce
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer

19LTB228 Cervical Screening Saves Lives Campaign

Cervical Screening Poster 1

Cervical Screening Poster 2


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