Cervical Screening Affected by Temporary Reagent Shortage

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Cervical Screening Affected by Temporary Reagent Shortage

Adult and Cancer Screening Team, NHSE/I London region, recently advised practices in a letter that, due to a problem in the supply of reagents, there would be a temporary increase in turnaround time for the testing of cervical screening samples.

Dear Practice Managers and Sample Takers,
Re. NHS Cervical Screening Programme Sample Results
We are writing to let you know that Cervical Screening London (CSL) will be processing fewer cervical screening samples over the next couple of weeks.

This is because of a short-term shortage in the supply of reagents for the testing process. CSL has been informed by the supplier that stocks will become available again the w/c 5 October 2020 and are working with them to minimise any risk of this happening again.

Please continue to take cervical screening samples and send them to the laboratory as you would normally. On receipt, the samples will be stored in a suitable environment until they can be processed; the results will not be affected.

We advise that when taking samples, you inform your patient that results may take a little longer and that they should contact you in the practice if they’ve not received anything within six weeks. Please also reassure people that this is unlikely to cause or increase the risk of clinical harm to them and that cervical cancer takes many years to develop in most cases.

We will update you if there are any changes to the situation. 

Many thanks,

Oliver Paul
Cancer Screening Commissioning Manager
Adult and Cancer Screening Team
NHSE/I London region

Expiry date: Sep 28th, 2021