Cervical Cancer
Screening

The Task Force’s 2013 guideline does not recommend HPV screening.

While Gynecology experts recommended Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) screening in 2013, the Task Force recommended against screening for HPV in its 2013 publication. This guideline has not been revised as of early 2024.

Canada is now many years behind other countries. Australia, the Netherlands and the U.K. began HPV screening as early as 2017. While Australia is on the way to becoming the first country in the world to eradicate cervical cancer through HPV screening and vaccination, Canada does not yet have a national guideline recommending HPV screening. A few provinces have started to plan HPV screening programs, ignoring the Task Force’s guideline. An update for the guideline is scheduled for 2025, but when it is published, it will likely be another year or two before provinces start to roll out screening en masse. Canada will be nearly a full decade behind other countries. During these years of delay, hundreds of Canadian women per year continue to develop avoidable cervical cancer.

We believe that the evidence strongly supports primary HPV screening is a significant step toward both increasing the efficacy of screening and decreasing its harms.” — letter from K. Joan Murphy, Clinical Lead of Ontario Cervical Screening Program.