The Omineca Medical Clinic will be holding a one-day pap clinic at the end of the month to increase awareness of cervical cancer.
Doctor’s Rebecca Janssen and Nicole Bennett-Boutilier will be giving the paps on September 23.
The clinic falls a month before national pap awareness week which runs from October 23 – 29.
“The reason we are doing the clinic is firstly to increase awareness about cervical cancer and also a lot of women in town have a male family doctor and they would like to have a pap done by a female doctor,” said Janssen.
“It’s also quicker than a normal appointment,” she added.
“We want to promote how important it is for women to come,” said Bennett-Boutilier.
“Women tend not to come for several reasons – sometimes its because they are self conscious, sometimes it’s because they are fearful, or they are in denial that anything can be wrong,” she said.
A pap should not be painful. You should feel pressure but no pain. If you do feel pain during your pap you should tell your doctor during your exam.
“Women need to get in to the habit of having these paps every year,” said Bennett-Boutilier.
It’s best to come for a pap, two weeks after your last period.
Doctors will also offer to take swabs for sexual transmitted infections at the same time as doing the pap.
“STI’s can be very problematic if they go undetected and can impact fertility in future years,” said Bennett-Boutilier.
British Columbia was the first place in the world to establish an organized population-based program to screen for cervical cancer all the way back in 1955 and since then rates of cervical cancer in B.C. have dropped by 70 per cent.
The BC Cancer Agency has recommended that women start having pap tests at the age of 21 or approximately three years after they become sexually active.
About six women in 100,000 are diagnosed with cervical cancer in B.C. each year, the majority of which have not been having regular pap tests.
To book an appointment please call 250-567-2201.