What we do

Cancer screening

Collaborating with general practice, the community and the other stakeholders to improve cancer screening rates and reduce cancer risk in our region.

On average, one-in-two people in NSW will be diagnosed with a form of cancer by the age of 85 (Cancer Institute NSW – 2018). Cancer is now the largest cause of mortality in Australia, surpassing cardiovascular disease (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare – 2016).

To achieve this, we are undertaking a cancer screening project which aims to improve participation in the three national screening programs: cervical, breast and bowel cancer screening. 

Increasing participation in these three national screening programs can lead to earlier detection of cancer and in turn help increase the survival rate for people diagnosed with cancer and lead to better outcomes and improved quality of life.

 

What is cancer?

Cancer occurs when normal cells grow and multiply in an uncontrolled way. These may spread to other parts of the body. When cells form a mass they are called tumours, either benign or malignant.

Benign Tumours: Benign tumours are not cancerous, do not spread, can be removed and usually do not return.

Malignant tumours: Malignant tumours are cancerous, grow uncontrollably, can spread, and may require many types of treatment or management.

 

What is cancer screening?

Cancer screening can help protect your health through early detection, even if you do not have any symptoms of the disease. Simple screening tests will look for particular changes, early signs of cancer or the likelihood a person could develop the disease in the future.

In many cases, early detection increases the chances of successful treatment. Tests are offered to people who may have a risk of a particular disease because of their age, gender or other factors. A screening test is the first step. 

 

National Cancer Screening Register

There is one National Cancer Screening Register record for every Australian participating in the National Cervical Screening Program and the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program

The three main functions of the national register are to:

  • send invitation and reminder letters to participants
  • provide a safety net for when a person is at risk and who have not attended further testing by prompting them to have follow-up tests
  • provide a history of screening results

If you are eligible to participate in Australia’s bowel or cervical screening programs, you can use the national register to:

  • review and update your personal information
  • check your screening test history and when your next screening is due
  • manage your participation.

Call the National Cancer Screening Register on 1800 627 701.

Find more information on the National Cancer Screening Register website

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