Cervical Cancer: Screening

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 15th January 2019.

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Photo of Jim Shannon Jim Shannon Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Human Rights), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Health)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to introduce an epigenetics-based test for cervical cancer on the NHS.

Photo of Steve Brine Steve Brine The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

The United Kingdom National Screening Committee (UK NSC) has not reviewed the evidence for an epigenetics-based test within the cervical screening programme.

It is important that any screening test introduced into a screening programme is based on robust published peer reviewed evidence demonstrating more good than harm. A change to the main screen test such as using epigenetics-based testing would be considered as a major programme modification to the cervical screening programme.

Submissions to the UK NSC to consider a programme modification can be submitted throughout the year with more information available at the following link:


NHS England is currently working to implement primary human papillomavirus screening in England.

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