Women are having a difficult time accessing health care without being coerced into a pap test. Some women are bullied to the point of having to leave without having the reason for their doctors visit addressed. This is a far cry from informed consent. It is also endangering women’s health.
It is high time family doctors had their speculums confiscated. If a woman is having worrisome gynecological symptoms or if she wants to be screened for cervical cancer (which by the way is RARE) by having a pap test, then the woman should be referred to a gynecologist. Gynecologists should be the sole keepers of the coveted speculum. This way a woman will be able to go to a family doctor or clinic without being coerced into stripping and spreading her legs before she can gain access to other health care. It will also free family doctors to focus on other parts of a woman’s body.
For information on unreliability of pap smear results (Between 10 and 60 percent of all Pap smears are incorrectly analyzed): ehealthmd.com/content/how-accurate-are-pap-smear-results
For statistics on prevalence of cervical cancer: http://forwomenseyesonly.wordpress.com/2012/08/14/incidence-of-cervical-cancer-in-canada-what-the-raw-statistics-say/
For article written by three female doctors regarding unnecessary pelvic exams: jwh.2010.2349 (application/pdf Object)For article summarized:http://forwomenseyesonly.wordpress.com/2012/09/30/battle-brewing-over-pointless-pelvic-exams/
For information related to increasing costs of healthcare due to unnecessary pelvic exams: Requiring Women To Undergo Unnecessary Annual Exams For Birth Control Highlights Costs Of Overtreatment | ThinkProgress.
For female doctor’s opinion on being pressured into having pap smears: Why I don’t have smears | Margaret McCartney’s blog
For story of women being bullied into pap tests: http://forwomenseyesonly.wordpress.com/2012/10/17/what-some-male-doctors-do-when-women-say-no/