Saba to begin cervical cancer screening
Population screening for cervical cancer on Saba will begin on February 7, 2022. Saba Cares will invite women in the appropriate age group by phone for the screening (a swab test ). Screening for cervical cancer is an important population screening to prevent cervical cancer. Participation is free and voluntary. In the next three years all women on Saba aged 30-60 will have the chance to participate in this screening, where testing, diagnostics and treatment are embedded in a systematic and monitored process. This year, women aged 50-60 are invited as the first age group.
Women on Saba are already reasonably familiar with cervical cancer screening. However, until now (laboratory) diagnosis and treatment are not structurally embedded in a defined and qualitative solid process. Thanks to the good cooperation between RIVM and Saba Cares the testing on cervical cancer will now be anchored in a population screening. This structural approach will contribute to health gains for the population on Saba.
Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer among women globally. Thanks to the population screening on cervical cancer with a swab test, precancerous stages of cervical cancer can be detected early. A preliminary stage of cervical cancer is usually fairly treatable. By treating a preliminary stage in time, cervical cancer can be prevented.
In 2019 a pilot breast cancer screening was performed on Bonaire. In 2020, by order of the then State Secretary Paul Blokhuis, the basis was established for the introduction of the population screening for cancer in the Caribbean Netherlands. To date, almost 600 women have participated in the breast cancer screening on Bonaire. This is an important step since many islanders were not yet known or familiar with the screening. In the course of the coming year, population screening pilots for cervical cancer will also start on Sint Eustatius and Bonaire.
More information: Cervical cancer screening on Saba | RIVM