Colorado ‘failing’ at cervical cancer prevention

Colorado has received a failing grade for cervical cancer prevention.

The state ranked 25th nationally for the percentage of females over the age of 18 who had taken necessary steps to prevent cervical cancer – that is, having a Pap test within the last three years.

This ranking came from the Making the Grade on Women’s Health: A National and State-by-State Report Card, produced by the National Women’s Law Center.

Worldwide, cervical cancer is the second most common form of cancer in women.

A Pap test is the primary tool for detecting cervical cancer. If caught early, it is highly treatable, and women have a long life-expectancy after diagnosis.

The grading system was released as part of  Cervical Cancer Awareness Month.

Nationwide, six out of 10 cases of cervical cancer occur in women who have never been screened or who haven’t had a Pap test in the past five years.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that girls and young women between the ages of 9 and 26 take the three-shot vaccine, in addition to routine follow up.