Toolkit for engaging Under-screened and Never-screened women in the National Cervical Screening Program
Consumer resources about the National Cervical Screening Program are available on the Publications and resources webpage
These resources are available in various languages and for different population groups. Some may be downloaded for printing while others can be ordered in hard copy for your health service.
This diagram of the female reproductive system may be useful for explaining HPV, cervical cancer and the Cervical Screening Test:
(Reproduced, with permission, from Cancer Council Australia)
Community education sessionsCommunity education sessions about cervical screening can help to engage under-screened and never-screened women.
Health educators might conduct sessions with existing women’s groups or gather women together for special events, such as Women’s Health Days. Groups may include women’s groups, carers groups, Aboriginal Elders groups, consumer groups, church groups etc.
- Where possible, deliver the information in the group’s first language. If group members are from CALD backgrounds, bilingual health educators may be available locally to deliver education sessions about cervical screening. If they are not, engage the assistance of an interpreter.
- For groups of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander women, consider engaging, or working in partnership with, local Aboriginal health workers or educators to deliver education sessions about cervical screening.
- Ensure the health educator has a good understanding of their audience and is able to deliver information in a culturally sensitive manner.
- Use visual aids, such as diagrams of the female reproductive system and cervical screening equipment (speculums etc) to explain concepts.
- Allow plenty of time for questions.
- If planning a larger event, include a range of interesting topics and engaging guest speakers to increase the appeal of the event and hopefully, attract more women.
- Providing transport and/or child care may encourage more women to attend.
- Choose a time that works well for the women you are trying to attract. You might find that evenings work better in your community.