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Eur J Cancer. 2009 Oct;45(15):2679-84. doi: 10.1016/j.ejca.2009.07.025. Epub 2009 Aug 19.

Challenges in starting organised screening programmes for cervical cancer in the new member states of the European Union.

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Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Oncological Institute I. Chiricuta, Cluj-Napoca, Romania.


Following the 2003 Recommendation of the Council of the European Union on cancer screening, equal access to organised cervical cancer screening is supposed to be ensured for all women at risk in all member states. However, the first IARC report on the implementation of the Council Recommendation suggests that a remarkable proportion of women in the new member states are not yet covered with the free Pap tests offered either in organised or opportunistic manners. Cervical cancer incidence and mortality rates in most of these countries are among the highest in Europe. The purpose of this paper is to identify some common challenges and make further proposals in organising and implementing quality-assured cervical cancer screening programmes in these countries. Based on the responses to a corresponding questionnaire, a summary on cervical cancer prevention policies was established for the seven new European Union member states, Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia, and two candidate states, Croatia and Serbia. In most of these countries there are a lot of challenges to overcome before achieving the level of preventive services as seen in Finland and the Netherlands nowadays.

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