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CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update
UNITED KINGDOM: Research Study Set Up to Help Women Battling Cervical Cancer

January 27, 2012
Belfast Telegraph (01.26.12) - Friday, January 27, 2012

In Northern Ireland, the National Health Service automatically invites women ages 25-64 for cervical screening every three to five years. An estimated 77 percent of eligible women follow through with their screening visit. To mark Cervical Cancer Prevention Week this week, Action Cancer is encouraging women in the region to attend their scheduled cervical screening appointment.

"Every year there are approximately 90 women who are diagnosed with cervical cancer here," said Emily Magrath, the charity's health promotion manager. "Over half of these women either have never had a smear test, or their last smear test has taken place more than five years previously." Action Cancer also announced it has commissioned the University of Ulster to conduct a study assessing the needs of women in the region diagnosed with cervical cancer. The data will be collected with the aim of improving services, said Geraldine Kerr, the charity's head of professional services.

"It will involve a review of the effectiveness of support groups for women with cervical cancer; map out the existing support services available; and carry out a focus group involving women diagnosed with the disease on their psychosocial needs and how those could be addressed," Kerr said. "This research will deepen and further our understanding of the needs of women who require information and, more importantly, support for those living with a cervical cancer diagnosis."