Cervical cancer is highly treatable if detected early. Regular cervical smears every three years is recommended for women aged 25 to 69 years, if they have ever been sexually active.
Our nurses will send out reminders when you are due for your next smear. More regularly screening may be required for some women and will be discussed with you if necessary. Screening and immunisation are the most effective protection against cervical cancer.

St Martins Medical Centre offer a safe environment for cervical smear tests, this can be completed with our trained nurse or female doctors. We can also provide details for Maori and Pacific health providers, please call and ask to speak with one of our nurses if you have any questions or concerns.
We highly recommended having regular smear and we focus on making this experience as comfortable as possible.

You should have regular smear tests if you:

  • are a woman or trans or non-binary person with a cervix are aged 25 to 69 years
  • have ever been sexually active (even if this was once)
  • This also includes if you:
  • are immunised against HPV
  • are single
  • only have sex with women
  • have a disability
  • have been through menopause
  • are no longer having sex.
  • If you have had a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) check with your nurse or doctor if you still need to be screened.

Funded smears are available for Maori, Pacific and Asian women, if you are overdue for a smear for 5 years and for your first smear. A cervical smear with the nurse is $35-00, however if you are concerned about the cost we have other funding options we can discuss with you. You will always be notified about your results, usually via a test message even if this is negative. These can take up to a week to come in.

Cervical Cancer

Cervical cancer is caused by certain types of the human papillomavirus (HPV), a very common virus passed on by sexual contact. Most people will come into contact with HPV at some stage during their life. Most HPV infections clear by themselves, but some high-risk types can cause cell changes on the cervix that may lead to cervical cancer years after infection. Other types can cause genital warts, but these strains do not lead to cancer.

A woman’s best protection against developing cervical cancer is having regular cervical smear tests. A cervical smear test is a screening test to find abnormal changes in the cells of the cervix. HPV testing may be carried out if the criteria is met, to see if certain high-risk types of HPV are present in the cervix. This helps to define the risk of cervical cancer.

HPV Vaccination

Immunisation is now available to protect women against two common types of HPV (types 16 and 18) that cause around 70 percent of cervical cancer. This is funded and available from the age of 11 until 27 years. Please discuss the scheduling and doses with one of our nurses. The ideal time to have this vaccination is prior to any sexual contact. The vaccine does not protect against all HPV types; therefore, women who have been immunised must still continue to have smear tests.