Paul Roberts on Time to Test

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Jan 27, 2023

“The Cervical Screening Administration Service (CSAS) has been part of NECS since 2019 and supports the National Cervical Screening Programme which aims to reduce the number of women diagnosed with cervical cancer.

“At CSAS, we’re responsible for providing Prior Notification Lists of patients eligible for screening to GP practices, sending out call and recall letters to patients eligible for cervical screening tests, and for notifying patients of test results once we receive these from laboratories. We issue about 1.1 million letters, reminders and result notifications every month.

“I joined the service as Operations Manager in 2019, stepping up to Head of Service in 2020. We now have a 135 strong team based in offices in Leeds and Preston and are all very committed as a team to delivering a safe, efficient and confidential service.

“NECS has signed up to the cancer charity Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust’s Time to Test campaign which aims to support employees in attending cervical screening tests. This was actually suggested by some of our team members. The campaign encourages organisations to sign up and support staff in attending these vital health appointments if they can’t get a test outside of working hours.

“Cervical screenings (smear tests) save lives but almost 1 in 3 don’t attend their appointments when invited. The test isn’t always easy at the best of times, but research shows that 38% have difficulty in getting and attending a convenient appointment, particularly those who work.

“The campaign is part of the national Cervical Cancer Prevention Week (23-29 January 2023) and signing up demonstrates our commitment to raising awareness of and playing a part in preventing cervical cancer, and promoting a corporate culture that empowers, values and supports employees in looking after their health.

“Cervical screening can help detect cell changes at the earliest stage and stop cervical cancer from ever developing. Giving employees the time to attend cervical screening can help make this happen.”