Only 59.6 per cent of women aged 25 to 49 have been scanned for cervical cancer in the area covered by the Bradford City Clinical Commissioning Group in the last three-and-a-half years – by far the worst record in West Yorkshire.

The next worst is 72.3 per cent, which is the figure for Bradford District CCG’s area.

In total, only 62.8 per cent of women aged between 25 and 64 in Bradford City CCG have been for a cervical screening in the last five-and-a-half years.

The figure for women aged between 50 and 64 in Bradford City CCG is at 76.1 per cent – also the lowest in West Yorkshire.

Now, Public Health consultants in Bradford want more women to go for their cervical screenings as part of Cervical Cancer Prevention Week, which started yesterday and runs until Saturday.

Shirley Brierley, consultant in Public Health for Bradford Council, said: “It’s very important younger women eligible for the screenings attend. Those aged 25 to 34 are most likely to be unsure whether they need to attend.

“Yet one of the largest spikes in incidence rates for cervical cancer is women in their early 30s. Cervical cancer is unusual because rates don’t just increase with age.

“Cervical screening is not a test for cancer but is a method of preventing cancer by detecting and treating early abnormalities which can prevent the disease before it gets started.

“Screening isn’t used to investigate cervical symptoms. If you have any unusual symptoms, such as bleeding after sex or between periods, you should see your doctor as soon as possible.”

The latest figures also show that 74.9 per cent of 25 to 64 year olds in West Yorkshire attended their latest cervical screening appointment.

Rona Daniels, screening and immunisation lead from NHS England, West Yorkshire, said: “This procedure takes around five minutes to perform and it can save lives. Women have the option to request that a female doctor or nurse perform the procedure, it is confidential and they are also able to take a friend along with them.

“It is estimated that early detection and treatment can prevent up to 75 per cent of cervical cancers. If abnormalities are detected at an early stage then treatment can reduce the risk of cervical cancer developing.”