SunLive – Cervical Screening – Need a Test?


Bay of Plenty Wahine/Women and people with a cervix are encouraged to check they are up to date with their cervical screening test.

“A cervical screening appointment typically takes less than 15 minutes and should typically be performed every three years,” says Lynne Clayton, regional coordinator of the BOP/Lakes Cervical Screening Program.

“It’s a simple procedure that has been shown to save lives.”

Cervical cancer is one of the most preventable types of cancer – results show that a screening every three years can reduce the risk of developing it by up to 90 percent.

“Finding the time for the screening can be difficult, but it’s important for Wahine to prioritize himself and his haorah to keep him thriving.”

The cervical screening test identifies abnormal changes in the cells of the cervix. These cell changes are caused by the human papilloma virus.

HPV infection is very common and most people will be exposed to it at some point in their lives. Changes in the cervix caused by HPV infection happen slowly.

“With regular cervical screening, there is an excellent chance that the abnormal cells will be found and treated before they ever become cancer.”

Together, the HPV vaccine and cervical screening are your best protection against cervical cancer. Anyone under the age of 27 can get the HPV vaccine for free, for other age groups there is a charge.

To find out when your next test is due, where to get tested, or if you qualify for the HPV vaccine, contact your GP, Māori Health Service, family planning clinic, sexual health service or the local registry team for cervical examinations.

Visit: Or call toll free 0800 729 729. Information on HPV immunization can be found at:


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