Available to Female Patients Now through September 30th Only: Cervical Cancer Screenings at Significantly Reduced Rates
Goodwin Community Health has partnered with the Cervical Cancer Champion Grant to increase screenings and reduce the mortality rates, through early detection, of cervical cancer among NH women. This program offers free office visit for Pap Smear appointments to female patients who are overdue for cervical cancer screening according to the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologist guidelines.
- Pap Smear
- Transportation assistance if needed
This grant covers your office visit. So it reduces the cost of a Pap Smear to just the out of office test. While the office visit is at no cost, the out of office lab test is NOT Free and is the responsibility of the patient.
To Be Eligible You Must:
- Be between the ages of 21 and 29 and have not had a Pap Smear in the last 3 years.
- Be between the ages of 30 and 65 and have not had a Pap Smear in the last 5 years.
What Is A Pap Smear?
A Pap Smear is a sample of cells taken from the service of the cervix, which is used to test for cervical cancer. During your Pap Smear, you may also be tested for Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). It is a simple test in which your provider takes a small sample of cells from your cervix with a small swab. Some patients feel slight discomfort or simply pressure.
Why Is It Done?
A Pap Smear can save your life. It can find the earliest signs of cervical cancer. In most cases cervical cancer can be prevented through early detection and treatment of abnormal cell changes that occur in the cervix before cervical cancer develops.
Getting regular Pap Smears is the best thing you can do to prevent cervical cancer. In fact, regular Pap tests have led to a major decline in the number of cervical cancer cases and deaths.
Who Should Have A Pap Smear?
- Cervical cancer screening (testing) should begin at age 21. Women under age 21 should not be tested.
- Women between ages 21 and 29 should have a Pap test every 3 years. Now there is also a test called the HPV test. HPV testing should not be used in this age group unless it is needed after an abnormal Pap test result.
- Women between the ages of 30 and 65 should have a Pap test plus an HPV test (called “co-testing”) every 5 years. This is the preferred approach, but it is also OK to have a Pap test alone every 3 years.
What Happens If My Pap Smear Is Abnormal?
Usually it takes 3 weeks to get Pap Smear results. Most of the time, test results are normal. If the test shows that something might be wrong, your doctor will contact you to schedule more tests. There are many reasons for abnormal Pap test results. It usually does not mean you have cancer. If more testing is necessary and cost is a concern, there are separate grants to cover the costs for qualified patients.
How Do I Prepare for a Pap Test?
Many things can cause wrong test results by washing away or hiding abnormal cells of the cervix. So, we suggest that for the day before the test you avoid:
- Using tampons
- Using vaginal creams, suppositories, and medicines
- Using vaginal deodorant sprays or powders
- Having sex