Get the Inside Scoop on the Target 100,000 Campaign

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Back in August, I was invited to London to meet GynaeHealthUK, Jo’s Trust and Doctor Pixie McKenna, GP, Media medic and Doctor from ITV’s Embarrassing Bodies.

I was chosen along with a small number of bloggers to get the inside scoop on the Target 100,000 Campaign and become educated all about Cervical Cancer Screening. Prior to the event I honestly knew very little about cervical cancer screening and the HPV virus. After listening to Dr Pixie, I gained a wealth of knowledge, knowledge which I can now share with my readers in the hope of preventing more women from dying at the hands of cervical cancer.

The GynaeHealthUK Event

The GynaeHealth event was held at Tanya’s Cafe which happens to be an amazing Raw Food Restaurant & Europe’s First Superfood Cocktail Bar. We were treated to a special breakfast, had smoothies and listened away as we learned about a new revolutionary method for cervical screening called GynaeCheck. We were told about the Target 100,000 Campaign and the plan to have 100,000 women tested for cervical cancer throughout the UK.

The campaign will be covered by many media outlets over the coming days and weeks including coverage by the Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, This Morning and BBC Radio. Whilst at the event I was given the opportunity to ask Dr Pixie a number of questions. These were filmed and the exclusive footage is available here on the blog.

What is the Target 100,000 Campaign?

New research has found that despite cervical screening being offered free in the UK via the NHS, over 5,346,000 women in the United Kingdom are not up to date with their cervical screening appointments. Over 1.1 million women admit they have never had a smear test, blaming pain, embarrassment and struggling to get to an appointment as the main reason.

The aim of the Target 100,000 Campaign is to get 100,000 of these women, women who are missing out on potentially life saving cervical screenings, to use the new GynaeCheck screening method to rule out HPV.

Two weeks ago I wrote a post Goodbye Cervical Smear, Hello GynaeCheck. This was all about the revolutionary new screening test which allows women to self test for the HPV virus which causes 99.7% of cervical cancers. The Gynae Check device is a fast 3 second device that can be used in the privacy of your home home. This new home based screening test is clinically proven to be equally effective as the more commonly used smear test.

cervical cancer

Research commissioned by GynaeHealthUK has found that 70% of women believe that a self-collecting alternative to “the smear test” should be available to all women in the UK. This was also voiced by many who engaged with my previous blog post.

Everyday smear tests that are conducted by healthcare professionals are free via the NHS. This is a good option for the 16 million women in the UK who are of screening age. However for the 5 million women who are late to book appointments, due to chronic illness, working full time, religious reasons, or for women who are too scared to have a smear due to pain or trauma caused by sexual abuse, this is now a new way to screen for cervical cancer.

This alternative method was launched this month September 2015 and is here to help save lives and prevent more women dying from cervical cancer.

Dr Pixie McKenna, GP and Media Medic has said,

“Busy women who struggle to make time for non-emergency health appointments should consider GynaeCheck which can be completed in three seconds in the comfort and privacy of their own homes,”.

It is hoped that the Target 100,000 campaign will test an additional 100,000 women across the UK. None of us want to lose a mother, a sister, a daughter or a friend to cervical cancer!

Exclusive Footage of Dr Pixie answering our Questions about GynaeCheck HPV screening.

As part of the GynaeHealthUK event in London, a number of female bloggers, including myself were able to ask Dr Pixie McKenna lots of questions about the new cervical screening option. We were filmed and these video’s are exclusively available to be watched here on my blog.

You can watch all 6 Videos filmed at the GynaeHealthEvent (with Dr Pixie Mckenna) Here!

Is the new Cervical Screening Method approved and how does it compare to a smear test?

After introducing GynaeCheck as an alternative to the more commonly used smear test I received a lot of response in the comment section of my blog but more so on social media. Many women loved the idea of the test, sharing the painful and uncomfortable experiences that they had previously encountered. Some women however were very cautious for example I was questioned whether GynaeCheck is approved in the UK. I was also challenged as to why I would promote this product and mislead women into not having the well known smear and asked what would happen if the test was not carried out properly.

The great news is that solid research has been carried out and studies show that the new GynaeCheck self testing method has the same levels of accuracy as a HPV swab taken by a GP or Health professional.

Last week, Consultant Gynaecologist Mr Jullien Brady was interviewed and stated, “If enough sample is not obtained the test is reported as null and void. The woman would be given instructions to repeat the test and will be sent a new testing kit free of charge”.

Jullien Brady said that: “99.7% of cervical cancers are caused by persistent high risk human papilloma virus (HPV) infection which causes changes to the cervical cells. Since 2013 the NHS has been running a pilot to investigate using HPV as a primary screening method. At six centres the brush sample is tested for HPV and only if the result is positive will the brush sample be examined under a microscope for abnormal cells (cytology). If HPV is not present (a HPV negative result) the women is extremely unlikely to develop cervical cancer and as such the woman will not need another smear test for three further years.

One woman also inaccurately believed she did not need a smear test or HPV screening because she had in the past received the HPV Vaccine. Whether you have received a vaccination or not it is still possible to develop cervical cancer and all women over 25 who have been sexually active need to be screened in order to prevent Cervical Cancer.

Where can you get more Information?

To learn more about the Target 100,000 campaign you can visit www.target100000.org.uk

If you or a family member are affected by Cervical Cancer you might like to visit Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust 

Do you know someone who has had cervical cancer? Have you had an unpleasant experience in the past or is there something stopping you from having a smear on the NHS? I’d love to here your comments and know what you think about the new Cervical Cancer Target 100,000 Campaign.

Please do share this important campaign and my post on social media, lets join together and spread the word about preventing cervical cancer from destroying more lives.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog post.

Angela Milnes xx

Gynaecheck
#GynaeCheck

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