Cervical cancer can affect anyone with a cervix who has ever been sexually active. It is almost entirely preventable with the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, regular screening, and appropriate and timely follow-up of abnormal results. Anyone with a cervix between the ages of 25 to 70, who have ever been sexually active, should bescreened for cervical cancer every three years. Most cervical cancers are found in individuals who have never been screened or have been screened less often than recommended by Ontario’s cervical screening guidelines. That’s why regular screening is so important.
When should I be screened for cervical cancer?
Currently, the Ontario Cervical Screening Program (OCSP) recommends that anyone with a cervix who is or has been sexually active have a Pap test every 3 years starting at age 21. This recommendation is in the process of being updated. If you are under 25, talk to your primary care provider about whether you should wait until age 25 before starting cervical screening with the Pap test.
For details, see Cervical Screening at Age 25.
For more information about the OCSP, please click here .
Cervical cancer screening is still needed if you:
- Feel healthy and have no symptoms;
- Are no longer sexually active;
- Have only had one partner;
- Are in a same-sex relationship;
- Have been through menopause;
- Have no family history of cervical cancer;
- Have received the HPV vaccine.
Individuals who have had a hysterectomy should talk to their healthcare provider to see if they need to continue to get screened for cervical cancer.
Where can you get screened?
There are many choices of where individuals can be screened for cervical cancer:
Thunder Bay District Health Unit
- Your family health care provider
- The Screen for Life Coach
- Your District Health Unit
- Individuals living in First Nations communities can contact their nursing station or health centre
Sexual Health Clinic
999 Balmoral St.
Thunder Bay, ON
Northwestern Health Unit Sexual Health Clinics:
Follow this link to find a location near you.
How do I book cervical cancer screening appointment on the Screen for Life Coach?
Anyone with a cervix between the ages of 25 and 70, who have ever been sexually active, can book their cervical cancer screening appointment on the Screen for Life Coach by calling (807) 684-7777
Cervical Cancer Screening Facts:
- Cervical cancer is almost entirely preventable with regular screening and follow-up.
- Most cervical cancers are found in individuals who have never been screened or have been screened less often than recommended by Ontario’s cervical screening guidelines. That’s why regular screening is so important.
- Cervical cancer is caused by a cancer-causing type of human papillomavirus (HPV) that persists, in other words, where the infection doesn’t go away.
- Regular cancer screening is important because it can find cancer early when it may be smaller and easier to treat. Screening for cervical cancer can also help prevent this disease by finding abnormal cells that could turn into cancer.