Changes to National Cervical Screening Program commence 1 December 2017

  23 November 2017  NWMPHN   

Changes to the National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP) will take effect from 1 December 2017.  As part of the renewal of the NCSP:  

  • A five yearly Cervical Screening Test will replace the two yearly Pap test. 
  • Women will be invited to start cervical screening from the age of 25 (currently 18) and will continue screening until they are 74 years (currently 69 years). 
  • Women who are already having Pap tests should have their first Cervical Screening Test when they are next due for their test (this is usually two years after their most recent Pap test for those women with a normal screening history). 
  • Healthcare providers will still perform a vaginal speculum examination and take a cervical sample, but the sample medium is liquid-based for partial HPV genotyping. 
  • Current MBS items will cease on 30 November and new MBS items for the new Cervical Screening Test will commence on 1 December 2017. 
  • The new Cervical Screening Test will be supported by a new National Cancer Screening Register which will send invitations and reminder letters to women when they are next due, and follow up letters when women have not attended further investigations or tests. 
  • The renewed program will protect up to 30 per cent more Australian women from cervical cancer. 

The transition to a new Cervical Screening Test is a major change for healthcare providers and their patients.  

Healthcare providers can now access key information about the program including updated publications and resources from the NCSP website.  This includes posters, brochures and factsheets that can be ordered at no cost.    

Education event: National Cervical Screening Program Update

North Western Melbourne PHN is hosting a free face-to-face or webinar session on changes to the cervical screening program for primary care professionals.

When: Thursday 30 November
Where: Face-to-face in Parkville or via webinar

Register now

More information

Training modules hosted by NPS MedicineWise continue to be available at These modules attract Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points.  

For more information, please contact Angela Ouroumis on 9347 1188 or email