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Cervical screening update 2019

National Cervical Screening Programme (NCSP): Change to screening start age

The eligible start age for cervical screening will increase from 20 to 25 years from November 2019.

Prior to the change in November 2019

  • It is recommended women aged 20 to 24.5 years of age who are not currently in the programme are no longer invited for screening.
  • Women between 20 and 24 years of age, who have already been screened, should continue to be screened, according to the current pathway.

After the change to the screening start age to 25 years

  • Women between 20 and 24 years of age, who have already been screened, should continue with screening.
  • Women under 25 years of age, who have not started cervical screening, can commence screening at 25 years.
  • Women can be invited to the screening programme from 24.5 years of age.

It is important to note that any women, including those outside the screening age range, who have concerning symptoms such as unusual vaginal bleeding should see their health care provider, who will arrange appropriate tests.

Resources regarding this change have been attached to the bottom of this page.

For more information

For more information visit the National Screening Unit website or contact Selena Batt, Staying Well programme lead:

Guide to use of lubricant in sample taking (Taranaki)

Please check with your suppliers regarding purchasing carbomer free lubricant.

Medlab Central has had feedback from sample takers regarding unsatisfactory results from cervical screening Thin Prep LBC samples as a result of the presence of lubricant containing carbomer. An increase in unsatisfactory samples has been confirmed by Ministry of Health (MOH) data.

Regarding the use of lubricant, MOH refers sample takers to section three of the National Policy and Quality Standards-Cervical Screening Services. Medlab Central has supplied a guide from the manufacturer on the use of Thin prep with the Cervibroom (the sampler) and an advice sheet on lubricant use and brands. 

For more information contact Herman Venter, Medlab Central operations manager, 021 056 7453.

Waikato cervical screening update 2019 presentations now on Ko Awatea (accessible for all localities)

If you are not already enrolled on Ko Awatea, see our website for instructions

Waikato, please note: for July only Ross Dewstow is away, so the temporary email is:

Certificates will be produced on completion of the quiz at the end of the presentation.

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