The renewed National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP), which commenced on 1st December 2017, includes the option of patients taking their own vaginal HPV test to engage women who decline a speculum examination. Australian pilot studies have demonstrated high levels of uptake by eligible women
Under the NCSP, HPV testing on self-collected samples will be available to some women age 30–74 years under the supervision of a healthcare professional who also offers cervical screening. The following groups of women will be eligible:
- Participant must be 30 years of age or older
- Participant must be two or more years overdue for screening, or never had a cervical screening test
- Participant must have refused a practitioner collected test (speculum examination)
- Participant must not be symptomatic (this requires a co-test)
Information for Practitioners
HPV self-collection is an important tool to increase cervical screening participation amongst under screened and never screened groups. People may decline to have a practitioner-collected cervical screening test for a range of reasons, including fear, discomfort, cultural reasons, trauma and lack of access to a suitable cervical screening provider. We know that self-collection is a highly acceptable test amongst people with a cervix, and that it is as sensitive as practitioner-collected samples for the detection of CIN2+/AIS and HPV
- Sampling instrument: a flocked swab (Copan FLOQswab 552C (also known as Copan 552.80C) – red top) can be used to collect the vaginal sample. Flocked swabs can be ordered from VCS here. The sample must be received by the laboratory within 28 days of collection.
- Requesting the test: Practitioners should request a CST or cervical screening test. If you are not a VCS Pathology practitioner, register here to receive test results.
For more information: View our Self-Collection Resources or contact an experienced Liaison Physician on 1800 611 635