Luton Clinical Commissioning Group

NHS Luton Clinical Commissioning Group

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Barriers to participation to Cancer Screening in Luton

To understand the reasons why the people of Luton are reluctant to take part in cancer screenings a survey was carried out between May and November 2017.  Some of the key findings of the report include:

  • Athird of local residents were unaware of NHS cancer screening.

  • Breast Cancer Screening - 49%said the fear of being diagnosed as positive stopped them from participating in breast screening. 35% said that they didn’t know how to do the test.

  • Cervical Screening - 49% said embarrassment of doing the test was the most common reason for not having cervical screening. 42% said that the fear of having a positive diagnosis prevented them from have a cervical screening. 

  • Bowel Cancer Screening - 62%sited ‘not understanding how to do the test’ as the reason for not participating in bowl cancer screenings. 47% were too embarrassed and 47% were frightened they would have a positive diagnosis.

  • Almost half of male participants were unaware of bowel cancer screening.

  • And, participants from ethnic minority groups reported much lower awareness of cancer screening than participants of a white ethnicity. 

The research was commissioned by Luton's Cancer Action Group and carried out by Luton Clinical Commissioning Group in partnership with Cancer Research UK’sHealth Facilitator team, who work with GP practices and other health professionals across the East of England to improve the early diagnosis ofcancer.


Cancer treatment is more likely to be successful if cancer is diagnosed at an early stage. In response to the findings in the report LCCG are launching an awareness campaign inviting people to ‘High Five – Screening Saves Lives’. Look out for the campaign on social media and locally.

The full report is attached below.
Follow the link to find out how to use a bowel cancer screening home kit:
Find out what happens at a cervical cancer screening appointment:
Find out what happens at breast screening appointments: 

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