Ways to stop cervical cancer

To the editor:

January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month, and the Cancer Services Program of Northeastern NY wants to raise awareness that there are two ways to prevent cervical cancer!

One way is through regular screening. Cervical cancer screening tests can find the cells that lead to cancer before it starts. These cells can then be removed. Screening also helps to find cancer early when it is most easily treated.

If you do not have insurance, the Cancer Services Program may be able to help. We offer free cervical cancer screening to eligible, uninsured women, age 40 or older. Our program also provides free breast and colon cancer screening. Call 1-866-442-CANCER (2262) today to find out if you qualify for free cancer screenings. If you live in Clinton, Essex or Franklin County, call the local office at 518-324-7671.

If you have insurance, talk to your doctor about getting screened. Cervical cancer screening is a covered service under most health plans, including Medicaid plans and plans participating in the New York State of Health.

The second way to prevent cervical cancer is by being vaccinated against the human papilloma virus (HPV). Research has shown that most cervical cancers are caused by HPV. The HPV vaccine is recommended for boys and girls between the ages of 9 and 14, and young adults through age 26. Ask your health care provider for more details.

Wouldn’t you want to try to prevent cancer if you could? You can!

Christina Battinelli

Targeted outreach worker

Cancer Services Program of Northeastern NY

FitzPatrick Cancer Center

The University of Vermont Health Network

Champlain Valley Physicians Hospital