Barriers to screening

The screening rate in Victoria is currently 60% (2012-2013), which means almost half of eligible women are still not screening every two years as recommended.

For different population groups, there are different barriers that may prevent women having Pap tests

Some of these barriers include:

  • Lack of information and understanding about Pap tests
  • Belief that cervical cancer will not affect them
  • Fear of Pap tests, or bad past experiences
  • Lack of transport and / or access to health services
  • Fear of results
  • Cultural and language issues
  • Embarrassment / awkward nature of the test
  • Reluctance to have a Pap test taken by a practitioner they know
  • Difficulty in accessing a provider of their choice
  • Being busy or forgetting when their next Pap test is due
  • Barriers associated with a disability

Useful links

Cancer Council Helpline