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Broome County Health Department Encourages Cervical Cancer Screenings

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January is Cervical Health Awareness Month and the Broome County Health Department is urging area residents to stay up-to-date on cancer screening tests.

The department says testing is important for women over the age of 21 to prevent and catch cervical cancer at its earliest stages.

Pap tests look for cell changes on the cervix. The human papillomavirus, or HPV, test looks for the virus that can cause these changes.

"It’s important to get your cervical cancer screenings because if you detect cancer in the beginning stages, treatment can be more readily available, and it can be more effective,” notes Laura Runyon, public health representative for the Broome County Health Department.

The B.C. Health Department offers a Cancer Services Program with free cancer screenings for those who cannot afford them, and don't have health insurance. To find out if you are eligible, you can contact the organization at 778-3900.