Cancer screening and support

Changes to your body's normal processes or unusual, unexplained symptoms can sometimes be an early sign of cancer. 

Cancer is a condition where cells in a specific part of the body grow and reproduce uncontrollably. It sometimes begins in one part of the body before spreading to other areas. 

Diagnosing cancer at an early stage is vital. If it's diagnosed at an early stage, when it isn’t too large and hasn’t spread, it's more likely to be treated successfully. If cancer spreads, effective treatment becomes more difficult and a person’s chances of surviving are lower. 

This is why screening is really important - to rule out cancer or other serious conditions. In Barnsley there are free screening services for some people for cervical, breast and bowel cancer. We’re encouraging people to attend their screening, regardless of if they’re feeling well. This is to detect any health problems so that early treatment can be offered it needed. A five minute test can save a life! 

Cervical cancer

Cervical cancer screening is available to women and people with a cervix aged 25 to 64. All eligible people who are registered with a GP (as female) automatically get an invitation by post. 

Trans-men, who were assigned female at birth won’t get an invitation if registered as male with their GP. However, they’re still entitled to screening if they have a cervix. 

The first invitation is sent to eligible people five months after their 24th birthday. People aged 25 to 49 receive invitations every three years. People aged 50 to 64 receive invitations every five years.   

Find out what to expect during a cervical screening appointment.

Breast cancer

You'll automatically get your first invite to a breast cancer screening between the age of 50 and 53. After this, you’ll be invited every three years until you turn 71.  

Routine breast screening now takes place within The Glassworks at the new Community Diagnostic centre. If you’ve received a breast screening letter, then you’ll need to call (01226) 432100 to book your appointment. 

This video shows what to expect during a breast screening appointment.

Bowel cancer

Bowel cancer screening is currently available to men and women aged between 60 and 74. However, the programme is expanding to make screening available to everyone aged between 50 and 59 years old. This will happen gradually over four years and started in April 2021.  

For the screening, you’ll use a home test kit, called a faecal immunochemical test (FIT). This is sent directly to your home every two years to collect a small sample of poo which will be sent to a lab.   

How you can prevent cancer

You can reduce your risk of cancer by leading a healthy lifestyle. This can be by:

  • stopping smoking
  • eating a healthy balanced diet
  • protecting your skin from sun damage
  • drinking less alcohol
  • staying a healthy weight

To find out more about how you can reduce your risk of cancer and the help available, visit the NHS website and Cancer Research UK.

#BeThatFriend campaigns

With the support of our partners, we’ve developed the #BeThatFriend campaigns.  

These have been developed to try and raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of different cancers. If a friend, family member or colleague mentions that they’ve noticed a change in their body we should play our part and advise them to seek medical advice. 

Take a look at some of our #BeThatFriend campaigns below: