Percent of screened positive women who have received treatment
The percent of women with a positive cervical cancer screening test who received treatment for cervical precancer during a given timeframe (e.g., monthly, quarterly, annually.
This indicator is calculated as:
(Number of women screened for cervical cancer that tested positive / Total number of women who received treatment during a given timeframe) x 100
Number of positive test results in a given timeframe; number of women who received treatment in same timeframe
Health facility records
The objective of cervical cancer screening programs is to detect and treat those women identified as having early signs of the disease. To reduce the number of cervical cancer cases and deaths worldwide, inexpensive, safe, and effective treatment must be available for all women who require it. Cervical cancer is often curable if detected and treated in its early stages: more than 80% of the women detected with early-stage disease can be cured with treatments such as surgery or radiotherapy. Thus, cervical cancer prevention services should be linked with cervical cancer treatment and palliative care services and integrated, wherever possible, into a national cancer control plan (ACCP, 2004).
This indicator is useful for determining what percent of screened positive women are treated, but not why the percent treated may be low, which could be a reflection of a combination of barriers on the part of clients and/or providers. For women, there may be lack of public awareness about cervical cancer prevention and treatment options or association of cancer with death. Clients may fail to attend subsequent visits if there’s been a lack of appropriate counseling, previous poor experience at the facility, or long delays in receiving test results. Other barriers may be geographic (e.g. limited transportation options, poor roads); physical (e.g. too ill); psychological (e.g. depression, fear of anything related to cancer); sociocultural (reflecting varying patterns of accessing health services); and financial. On the clinical side, several critical aspects for the diagnosis, treatment, and management of cervical cancer may be lacking such as awareness about early detection and treatment of invasive cancer; trained personnel; equipment; chemotherapeutic drugs; documentation of essential information on client care; and linkages among health facilities.
In many countries with cervical cancer treatment services, patients often do not use these services, do not complete their course of treatment, and do not attend follow-up for clinical monitoring. For example, a survey in six premier cancer hospitals in India indicated that a quarter of cervical cancer patients did not take or complete the prescribed course of treatment, and one-fifth of patients with localized cervical cancer did not seek treatment (ACCP, 2004).
sexually transmitted infection (STI), cervical cancer
Alliance for Cervical Cancer Prevention (ACCP). Planning and Implementing Cervical Cancer Prevention and Control Programs: A Manual for Managers. Seattle: ACCP; 2004. https://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/publications/cancers/a92126/en/