AUSTIN – In observance of January as National Cervical Health Awareness Month, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission is encouraging women to get screened for cervical cancer.
“It is so important to get screened regularly so that cervical cancer can be detected in its early stages when it’s easier to treat,” said Joe Perez, HHSC interim deputy executive commissioner for Health, Developmental and Independence Services. “HHSC is helping at-risk women receive these vital screenings through our Breast and Cervical Cancer Services program.”
The Breast and Cervical Cancer Services (BCCS) program provides low-cost and free women’s health services for uninsured and underinsured Texas women who meet eligibility requirements. Some of those services include cervical and breast cancer screenings, clinical breast examinations, mammograms and breast biopsies. BCCS helps fund clinics across the state to provide these life-saving screening and diagnostic services.
Between Sept. 2019 and Sept. 2020, BCCS helped more than 24,800 women including 9,466 women who received cervical cancer screenings and 1,043 women who received treatment for precancerous cervical conditions.
In 2017, which is the most recent year of available data, there were more than 12,000 new cases of cervical cancer for women in Texas. The disease is the third-most common cancer diagnosed among Texas women ages 20-39, and fifth among women ages 40-49.
To find BCCS providers or learn more about women’s health services, visit www.healthytexaswomen.org or call 2-1-1.
About Breast and Cervical Cancer Services Funding
As an awardee of the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP), BCCS is partly funded through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The federal program awards funding to states for early detection of cervical and breast cancers. Between June 2019 and June 2020, the federal program awarded BCCS more than $6 million as part of the effort. The Texas Legislature appropriates more than $2 million annually to supplement NBCCEDP efforts.
About National Cervical Health Awareness Month
National Cervical Health Awareness Month is observed in January in the United States. The month is intended to raise awareness about cervical cancer and provide education about prevention, screening and treatments. More information about cervical cancer is posted on the CDC website.