Woman Fights Back Against Pap Test Marketing Tactics

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The National Health Service (NHS), a publicly funded healthcare group, utilized marketing techniques designed to tug on women’s heartstrings and instill fear in an effort to increase cervical cancer screening in the United Kingdom.  The NHS used carefully crafted appeals to emotion in their creation of this original poster:46302_2715666748462_1831164053_n.jpgsmr

The NHS employs imagery and headlines designed to appeal to emotion through use of marketing tactics such as the following excerpt from the Cervical Screening Social Marketing Project reveals:

“Ideal creative format: Imagery – crucial to be able to read the hurt in the eyes. image should unambiguously convey loss/grief (quiet crying vs. noisy crying). close-up important. context helps (stairs/on the bed).  Headline – needs to refer to smear test, ‘my mum missed her smear test now I miss my mum’ was most compelling headline” http://www.cervicalscreeningproject.com/whatdidwedo/developandtest/phase2/servicepush2.php

Ann, a woman from the United Kingdom, has utilized the same marketing tactics that are used by the NHS to turn the tables in the following revised and revealing featured image:stpCervical cancer screening should always be each individual woman’s choice; a choice that is free from coercion, free from practitioners’ efforts to profit and reach screening targets, and free from propaganda that aims to manipulate the hearts and fears of women.

Thank you to Ann (March 17, 2013 at 11:29 am)

About forwomenseyesonly

Hi. My name is Sue and I am interested in promoting holistic and respectful health care.
Gallery | This entry was posted in health, informed consent, pap test, pap test coercion, pap test marketing, pelvic exam, unneccessary pelvic exam, unnecessary pap test and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

73 Responses to Woman Fights Back Against Pap Test Marketing Tactics

  1. Al says:

    Great idea, let NHS face their own weapon! Would be good to write something like:

    “My mum trusted cervical screening. She was hurt for no benefit, and now hates everything that comes with being a woman.”

    That would reflect the truth behind the screening program.

    • Alice (Australia) says:

      Here is a very impowering and interesting document Policy protocols and procedures manual for authorised Pap smear providers. It is especially relevant to Queensland, Australia.

      Some quotes from it:

      About informed consent.

      As with any procedure, Pap Smear Providers must obtain informed consent from the woman before the procedure is commenced and throughout the procedure.
      There are five components to consent:
      1. the client must understand the nature of their condition
      2. they must understand the nature of the proposed treatment or procedure
      3. they must be aware of possible alternative courses of action
      4. they must be acquainted with the risks of both the proposed and alternate courses of action
      5. they must be informed of the chances of success or failure of the proposed and alternative procedures.
      Therefore when women are asked to consent to a Pap smear, the above principles should be adhered to.
      It is important that women know that the Pap smear is a screening test and not diagnostic, and that there is the possibility of a false negative and a false positive result.
      Special communication strategies may be necessary to ensure that women with special needs (i.e. women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, or women with intellectual disabilities) fully understand the procedure and are capable of giving informed consent.

      Heath care providers (including PSPs) have a duty of care in diagnosing, treating and advising clients about the risk and consequences of treatment.

      About Pap smear registers and the opt-off procedure from this government-induced privacy infringement.

      Pap Smear Provider Responsibilities
      It is the Pap Smear Provider’s responsibility under the Public Health Act 2005 to inform each woman having a Pap smear, histology or HPV DNA test about the PSR. This includes:
      – the existence and purpose of the Register
      – the identifying and clinical information about the woman that may be recorded in the Register
      – that the woman may elect to ‘opt off’ from having her identifying and clinical information automatically included in the Register.

      If a woman indicates to the Provider she chooses to ‘opt off’ the PSR, the Provider will attach a “Not for Pap Smear Register” sticker on the pathology request form. If the provider does not have “Not for PSR” stickers, these words must be written clearly on the Pathology request form.

      It is important to note that if a request form has an ‘opt off’ sticker or notification on it, the PSR will not be sent any information about the woman. For this reason, women need to be asked by the Provider each time they have a Pap smear or related test about ‘opt off’, especially if they have done so previously, or their results will automatically be sent to the PSR and the woman will be sent a ‘Welcome letter’.

      So, on paper everything looks great: informed consent is acknowledged, downside of pap screening discussed, opt-off from Pap smear registers offered…

      In reality however, things are very different: real informed consent is non-existent, flaws of cancer screening are hushed up, not a peep about cervical cytology registers, let alone about opting out of them.

      By the way, if you live in Australia and want to stop pap smear reminder letters, you should remove your details from the pap smear register operating in your state or territory. By law, they must honour your request to delete all your data from their database. For example, here is the removal request form for Queensland http://www.health.qld.gov.au/cervicalscreening/documents/31829.pdf

    • Alice (Australia) says:

      And this is how the pap smear register opt-off right is honoured by QML Pathology Laboratory, the largest laboratory in Queensland:

      Some time ago a friend of mine gave in to the widespread cervical cancer scare campaign and agreed to do a screening test. She deeply regrets it now, but 2 weeks ago she did agree to have a pap smear on two strict conditions:
      1. None of her details or test results will be forwarded to Queensland Pap Smear Register.
      2. She will get a copy of the test results.

      Her doctor was very supporting and did everything that was necessary to meet the conditions. The doctor wrote the following on the pathology request form:
      “Copy to patient” and “Not for PSR”.
      Both lines are standard requirements for giving a copy to the patient and for opting off the pap smear register. Both lines were written in HUGE letters twice on the form, to be 100% sure.

      What did QML do?
      They and their sub-contracted lab managed to miss both requests.

      My friend has been stressing out, checking her letter box every day, but instead of her results she got a letter from Qld government congratulating her that her results have been forwarded to the register and are now public property. She, however, still doesn’t know the results of her test, still worrying. And the sad thing is that some paper-shufflers in the register already have already got her results and even sent her a “welcome” letter. Clearly, the medical system thinks that a silly register is more important than the patient. And the lab was careless enough to forget about the opt-off request.

      Because it became apparent that her test results are ready, she called the lab today, and they said that nothing has been sent to her. They didn’t notice the “copy to patient” request either.

      Ironically, QML’s website states that “your request form is a legal document” when it comes to telling the patients that they must not add anything to the form. But how about threating that legal document seriously in the lab? What a degree of negligence should a laboratory have to ignore both requests written in that “legal document” twice, in big letters?

      The outcome so far:
      – infringement of privacy
      – double negligence
      – breach of the Privacy Act 1988
      – breach of the Public Health Act 2005
      – a stressed and worrying person who now also has to deal with the register to remove her details from there (provided the details can actually be removed completely).

      And this is all for a test that may lead to even greater damage!

    • Alice (Australia) says:

      And this is a fraction of the debate in NSW parliament about the opt-in vs opt-off systems and respect for the patient’s choice, which surprisingly happened as far back as 17 years ago:

      PUBLIC HEALTH AMENDMENT BILL
      Second Reading

      Debate resumed from 17 April 1996.

      The Hon. Dr B. P. V. PEZZUTTI [3.25]: The Public Health Amendment Bill results from a commitment by the Carr Labor Government, through the personage of the Hon. Andrew Refshauge, Minister for Health, to change the way in which the pap smear register in this State operates. When in government I and then Minister for Health Ron Phillips determined, through public consultation, to have what is known in industry jargon as an opt-on register. Such a register gives people a choice to be placed on a register or within a reminder process regarding pap smears. Those who become part of the process have the benefits of the program – in this case pap smears but in other cases the benefits of an immunisation register and/or the immunisation process.

      This might seem small beer to many honourable members, but the opt-on process is important. I tell the House and the Minister that I have always been in favour of the opt-on process. However, many of my medical colleagues, especially general practitioners, including my wife, found that the responsibility for obtaining the consent of patients for their names to be on the register was taking up an inordinate amount of time in their rooms. The Cancer Council had placed with the general practitioner responsibility for ensuring that that consent was obtained. In other words, although the Cancer Council owned the register and had been given by the New South Wales Minister the task of running the registry and reminder process, it was left to the general practitioner to explain to the patients the whole of the process and the need for consent.

      I advised the former Minister for Health, Ron Phillips, of ways to fix this problem. The Cancer Council was responsible for obtaining the consents, not the general practitioner. The practitioner had enough trouble explaining the pap smear procedure to a patient, ensuring delivery of the sample and filling out the necessary forms to ensure that the registry records were accurate, without having to explain what the registry was all about, that it was something of an invasion of privacy and that the patients would be receiving letters from the Cancer Council. The Government and the present Minister, instead of making sure that responsibility for obtaining consent rested with the New South Wales Cancer Council, took the easy way out and decided on an opt-off register. It is incumbent on a general practitioner to send a pap smear test to the Cancer Council. If a woman does not want to be part of the register and get the letters of reminder and the benefits – and I use the word “benefits” advisedly – she has to write to the Cancer Council explaining that she does not want to be part of the register and wants to opt off the program. The general practitioner then has to explain to her what it means to opt off.

      The Hon. R. D. Dyer: That would depress participation rates, surely.

      The Hon. Dr B. P. V. PEZZUTTI: The Minister for Community Services has hit the nail on the head. Like many things that the Left of the Labor Party does – and the Minister for Community Services would know more about this than many – this action is being taken in the interests of the person concerned. In other words, Dr Refshauge, in a patronising way –

      The Hon. R. D. Dyer: You’re not calling me a Left member, are you?

      The Hon. Dr B. P. V. PEZZUTTI: No, I am not talking about the Minister, but he knows how the Left behaves. The Hon. Franca Arena also knows how the Left acts. The Left of the Labor Party considers that it is always in the best interests of the public to do what the Left tells it to do. The Left considers that it knows what is best for the public; the public would be better off if only it would do what the Left asked it to do. That is what the Left does all the time. The Minister for Community Services would have heard such sentiments expressed time and time again. Is that not right? …

      The Hon. Andrew Refshauge, in the interests of women, took what he thought would be the easy option to get participation rates up. He said that women were too bloody stupid to do it themselves, that they would not remember to go for tests, that they would not take any interest, and that they would not opt on.

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        Franca Arena made a huge fuss when the ONE critical article I can recall over the last 30 years hit the press (in the SMH “Spectrum” AND it was accurate by the way) – she has a pap test every year on her birthday. Horrible over-screening and she’s probably HPV- and not even at risk of cc. She was concerned this “irresponsible” article might put women off testing and some would die unnecessarily. Amazing so few see women as independent and competent adults when it comes to this testing. Real information was viewed as a huge threat, it was best to just pressure women to screen, keep them ignorant. Others had decided it was essential, others were accepting risk on our behalf.

        I certainly don’t want that sort of ignorance advising me or others or having a major influence on the program. Sadly, some/many high profile women with a lot of influence haven’t bothered to check the evidence and make their strident demands in a way that would infuriate them and be deemed an unacceptable way to treat women from any other area or group. Yet women can be treated appallingly, be harmed and distressed en masse “for their own good” with cervical screening.
        Just goes to show how much damage can be done when you brainwash women to believe the pap test is a feminist icon, our right of passage, a normal part of being a woman, a healthcare MUST that women would “avoid” unless they were forced to screen etc. (you know…women are so silly, hopeless, modest etc.)
        It still shocks me to hear Jo Hall, Deborah Hutton and others urging women to screen with zero respect for informed consent and no knowledge of the actual evidence, like they’re selling cars or turkish carpets. They’d be horrified to know they are partly responsible for some of the screening carnage.

  2. Ann UK says:

    Dear Sue, thanks for the post. I made a “revised” edition- http://tinypic.com/r/2lkfhx5/6 (I think i’ts better, could u swap them?) And I am putting together an abstract for an article (I’m a postgrad sociology student by day, and have friends in the media) with the title “”The NHS feeds the uneducated and the struggling through the meat grinder in order to protect a screening program that was implemented without randomised controlled trials”. Btw they admit that participation is below 80%, and the Bristol study states that in oder for the pogrm to have an effect on the mortality rates the participation must reach at least 80%, due to the rarity of the cancer and the inaccuracy of the test. These people have ABSOLUTELY no decency or shame. I am boiling with anger when I think of it.

    • Thank you Ann. I like the new version also. However, I also like the original one you made and I cannot swap them now as this one has had input as is – but people can click on the new version from the link you provided. And this way people can access both versions. It sounds like a very interesting abstract you are working on . . . I hope you keep me posted!

    • adawells says:

      Hi Ann,
      Just reading through the “back catalogue” of forwomenseyesonly, and I think your poster is absolutely brilliant. Is your postgrad thesis nearly finished? The pro-screening people in the NHS, are completely blinded in their mission, and pursue it with an evangelical zeal. It has happened throughout history, where groups of people have taken it upon themselves as their duty to lead their flock and tell them what to do. The screening programme is just a modern day version of this.

  3. Ann UK says:

    If you take a further look at the design of the “social marketing project, http://www.cervicalscreeningproject.com/whatdidwedo/developandtest/phase2/index.php They say for the focus group sampling “Each group consisted of core ACORN group N (Struggling Families) with some ACORN group M (Blue Collar Roots)/O (Burdened Singles).. ..None of the participants were educated past 18″ – blatantly and shamelessly preying on the struggling and the uneducated. I assume the more middle class folk has figured it out by now that this barbaric test is not exactly the best thing since sliced bread, so now they are resorting to such desperate measures.

    • Jola says:

      Ann, I’ve just been on the site (the link you pasted) and I can’t believe it is really happening in the UK – in the country where women are supposed to be treated equally with men. No, it is just beyond my comprehension. And the picture of another weeping child. Ann, don’t you think it is enough? Don’t you think that the NHS has gone too far? I believe they should be charged with a lot of money for using such gibberish, and what’s more, for intimidating, for harrying women. My question is: How dare they? How dare they attempt to make us feel guilty – of what?! I’m asking of what?! Of not complying to the program ”thanks to” which so many women have had further unnecessary mutilating treatments because of the false positives? Yeah – these ”carers” are paid not only for doing paps but also for further medical procedures. Am I right or wrong? Or am I just stupefied at this point? How long is it going to last?! Why does NHS scare people?!

      I feel like shouting to every woman: THINK BEFORE YOU ARE THE VICTIM OF THE HEALTH ”CARERS”.

  4. Jola says:

    Ann, this is absolutely great. Your job is excellent and it must go everywhere so that women see it and stop being gullible (as they are thought to be by the horrible medical industry where ONLY MONEY MATTERS – IT IS ALL FOR MONEY). And think that there are so many serious diseases which could be treated and for which money should be given by the government.

    How I wish more women from the country I come from knew English so that they open their eyes.

    Thank you, Ann

  5. Jola says:

    Can you imagine that in 2009, the former Polish Health Minister (a woman!) Ewa Kopacz, with her lobby of gynaecologists and oncologists – she herself is a pedriatrician – wanted to introduce COMPULSORY INTIMATE EXAMINATIONS: PAP SMEAR AND MAMMOGRAPHY FOR ALL WOMEN WHO WERE GOING TO WORK! The horrible exams were to have been ”medical examinations of work medicine” and she planned such examinations every two years, so the same woman was supposed to have the examinations once every two years. Of course, the stupid, very humiliating and offending exams weren’t brought into life because people protested and one woman wrote a petition which was signed by not even 2000 people (mostly women and few men signed it as well). But, though we were against it, strongly against it, many, I would say great numbers of women in Poland said we are stupid because we wanted other women (them) to have cervical cancer! Well, the women were really brainwashed and unfortunately, many Polish women are brainwashed. Something like the question of personal freedom, inviolability, mental and physical rape did not exist and do not exist for them! Believe it or not, but great great numbers of them have a pap smear done every year – for their own wish! Believe it or not, but millions of Polish women go to gynaecologists every year to check if they are ”healthy”. Believe it or not, an awful lot of Polish women can’t imagine having a contraception pill without going to a gynaecologist! They do so because they have no idea that such things are absolutely unnecessary, even harmful! Well, it is the matter of being brainwashed and then you will believe anything. Can you imagine that in Poland women have their pregnancies taken ‘care’ of by whom? – nobody else but gynaecologists. Yes, with the horrible internal gynaecological exams during pregnancy! In 2011 a new law was introduced for midwives – that they are allowed to take care of a pregnant woman. However, women can’t think of a midwife taking care of her pregnancy – really very very very few women in Poland go to midwives with their pregnancies. And just think that up to 1975 or something gynaecologists hadn’t taken care of pregnant women, but midwives. It’ll be hard to turn this situation over and make Polish women trust midwives as well as make them stop thinking that a gynaecologist is a Guru. Gynaecology is, unfortunately, a lucrative business in Poland. It must be beyond your comprehension. But, on the other hand, more and more young women buy contraceptive pills online and I think it all will be gradually changing, generally and sooner or later women will see that midwives can normally take care of pregnancy, that pap smears are really unnecessary, that gynaecologists make a lot of money on women’s gullibility.
    Just one moe thing – when introducing of the stupid compulsory intimate examinations was unsuccessful, the governmant started to threaten women that they would have to pay higher NIN contributions for the medical sector – but it was just rubbish.

    Look how horribly governments treat women, how much they want to control them and – what is worst of all – do various medical experiments on them. As far as I know (I’ve read it somewhere on the Internet), women in Germany have invitations for pap every year, women in China who work as civil servants have compulsory gynaecological examinations plus a pap (something like every two years – I’m not sure about it). I once read (I don’t know whether it’s true or not) on the Internet that women in Lithuania must undergo a pap smear so as to have their driving licence issued. Well, I believe that in many countries all over the world, women undergo the humiliating medical procedures just because they are women. Men aren’t coerced into having their prostate checked for cancer, nor do they have anything like that compulsory. It’s not true that we women are treated equally with men, no matter it is the UK, Poland, Lithuania or China.

    I nearly forgot – in the 90s women in Poland who wanted to be midwives and nurses had to undergo a pap smear – disgusting! I don’t know what the situation looks like now – I think it’s not any more. I’ll check it – I can’t find it on the net but I ‘ll search for it.

    Cheers

    We must fight for our rights and our basic right is inviolability.

    • Al says:

      Jola, it is not too hard to believe all these horrifying facts. I have friends in Eastern Europe and heard the stories. Unfortunately, there are too many people who are convinced that they can and should decide for others and tell the others what to do with their own bodies and health. The sad thing is that not only governments think they can shove tool in our genitals whenever they want for wherever reason they come up with, but there are plenty of brainwashed women who insist that the governments proceed with the appalling ideas of forced mass rapes (compulsory gynecological examinations) because they believe it will save them from illnesses.

      I can’t comprehend why such people feel free to tell the others what to do. If they do believe that their health benefits from ridiculously frequent pap smears or gyn exams – kudos to them – they can have their cervixes scraped and tools shoved up their vaginas every day if they wish. Nobody denies them this opportunity. But that is not enough: they are eager to make it COMPULSORY FOR EVERYONE.

      What’s the point? The less smart women go to gynecologists, the more doctors the gullible women can have for themselves. Perhaps, they actually hate those exams and only do them because they have been brainwashed that they must do them, otherwise they surely get cancers, but they don’t want to suffer from the exams alone, they want everyone else to go through the harmful and unnecessary procedures too. Perhaps, that makes their inflamed brain feel better.

      Why can’t they understand that every single person is the master of the own body? No one should be attempting to force any medical intervention on anyone else.

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        Al, You were interested in the Delphi Screener. This information comes from David Tan in Singapore, the representative for Delphi Bioscience in the region.
        Apparently they’re in the final stages of appointing an Australian distributor for the Delphi Screener. Presumably, this means women won’t have to mail their samples back to a lab in Singapore. Hopefully, you can order the device online and have your sample analyzed here. I haven’t made contact with Mr. Fotia yet, but the email address is:
        frankfotia@netspace.net.au
        David Tan’s email is
        david.tan@delphi-bioscience.asia
        I’d be grateful if you could post any additional information for the benefit of other women, in particular, how you order the device and the cost.
        Good luck…

      • Al says:

        Thank you Elizabeth.
        It is very nice to see that Australian women may soon get an opportunity to bypass the pap-nonsense and do a self-test if they are concerned about HPV. I wasn’t planning to test any time soon, just trying to get some information about available options for the future, but I will certainly share my experience online if I do order the test.

        I only hope that the purchase of Delphi Screener and its analysis will be totally separate from all Australian government, medical authorities or the medical system’s control, and they will offer an option to test anonymously. Because if any of my private or personal information will be passed to some pesky cervical cytology registers or disclosed to Medicare, I will certainly choose not to order the test. I am fed up with my private details being passed around by doctors and Medicare without my consent or control. It seems like there is no such thing as true privacy of medical records in this country. The only person the information is hidden from is the patient. That was the main reason why I stopped going to doctors: they always demand too much personal information, and then deny my full access to my own health records. So I was forced to make a decision: if I don’t get total control of my health information or don’t get the right to see doctors anonymously, no one gets my personal info, which means not going to doctors, nor dealing with Medicare.

      • Diane (US) says:

        I would hope that the Delphi Screener would be anonymous/not tied to public records regardless if it’s sold in Australia, the USA, etc.

        In the USA you can buy over the counter screening kits for a number of illnesses and situations – HIV, Hepatitis C, DNA paternity checks, cholesterol, and others. You do a finger prick or swab your cheek depending on the test, and send them the kit, and they have the results for you in a week or so. It’s all 100% anonymous and when you call or go to their website for results, you are identified by number. They never ever take your name or have you write it on the kit, it’s all done with that anonymous number. From what I understand, if your result is positive, they will give you some resources for help, and you can always print a copy of your results if you need or want them, but they never report the results to anyone or any health authority (they don’t even have your name, again!).

        They have other home test kits that just give you results on the spot- there’s one for fecal occult blood, and there are others for drugs, strep throat, mono, hormone levels, etc. All totally legal to buy and use and completely private.

        I would hope that the Delphi Screener could be handled that way.

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        Diane, I hope so too…
        I’m amazed the Delphi Screener might be available in this country, although they’ll probably keep it very quiet. (I don’t think distribution rights have been finalized yet)
        I’d also be concerned that Papscreen might try to access information/results and harass women into pap tests….use it to flush out the renegades.
        I wouldn’t put anything past them…
        Women should double check their details and results are safe/confidential….get it in writing.

      • Al says:

        Diane, I very much hope that HPV self-test will be truly anonymous, just like you described the other tests.

        But unfortunately I don’t have much hope for the Australian Medical Big Brother. So far, for example, fecal occult blood test kit is tied to Medicare here in Australia, and, of course, all the patient’s personal details and the test results are passed to Medicare database and disclosed to who-knows-whom from there. After catching Australian Medicare on disclosing my personal details to another government department, which, in turn, passed them to a foreign research company I won’t trust them ever again in my life.

        They all promise “security and confidentiality”. However, there is always too much fine print, if-s and but-s in those promises. Which means that the only 100% reliable way to protect your private details is to not disclose them at all. The only company I would trust with my medical information would be the one who won’t ask my name, address, bank card, Medicare card or any other identifying information at any point.

      • Alex says:

        Hadn’t thought of that- kind of a “misery loves company thing.” A medical methodology of doing something doesn’t change anything. If a doctor poisoned someone with a needle, it’d still be murder. Maybe making that comparison would be helpful. Rubbing the concept of not having any self-determination in someone’s face would be helpful, too. I don’t really know if that’s cruel, but making the point of “how are you going to ARGUE that you have no say in the matter?” might be useful. “What argument do you have, then? None, and it’s by your own hand.”

        Even if someone’s been set up/sabotaged in this subject, it doesn’t change the composition of their actions. They are still producing the same circumstances. Maybe the idea of NOT being applauded is something that would work. When someone doesn’t understand why someone is so hostile toward them, the information they didn’t know about this subject comes up. A bit like kicking someone when they’re down, but if they’re going to drag everyone else down with them- maybe it’s deserved. They want to act like a branch office for the doctor, they should maybe be treated as an extension of them.

    • Alex says:

      Some women are cut from the same cloth! I’ve noticed here in the U.S. they always have a female mouthpiece for whatever might be a problem along these lines (meaning: any situation where you might think “what about if women are involved?”). Acting like it’s woman-approved because she would know. There is a such thing as an aggressive lesbian (as well as vicarious thrills- maybe a broadcasting harm thing). Some people believe reality takes a coffee break for doctors & it doesn’t. Circumstances are not effected by designation.

      In America, if a woman gets hit & told to make dinner- that’s a problem. That’s a wrong-doing. But, apparently, worse is not. If someone got mad & kicked her in the tummy- that’s an attack. But an iatrogenic variation is not? Anytime something goes missing in a school (or they think they have something on them, etc…) you hear something problematic, then the idea that if who’s doing it is the same gender or it’s a means to an end, that’s okay. The components of a methodology don’t cease to exist in their own right & a same-sex attack is exactly that. Maybe it just adds an against-orientation aspect to things (like men in a prison cell). It doesn’t matter if something is integrated with something else. It seems attaching a rider onto something is seen as an acceptable strategy. It’s not a problem, if one thing is mixed with another.

  6. Jola says:

    Yes, t is true, Al. If they think it’s ”good” for them, they want it to be ”good” for others. How disgusting it is.

    Just one thing has come to my mind. In Poland, all workers of all sectors have so called medical examinations of work medicine. They are every 3,4,5 years (Iit depends on the conditions of work) and they involve: chest x-ray, blood test, now also eye test and, in case of teachers – larynx examination (a very unpleasant one). I remember – it was something like 1998-1999 when suddenly the ministry of health in the region I lived in made pap smear for techers (I have no idea if it was for other sectors of work – I don’t think so, and definitely it wasn’t all over the country, but just in our region – a ”health” program ( :) – an ironic smile). Then, I didn’t have children and my friend and I called the clinic protesting against it and the nurse asked us if we have children and we said NO so she told us not to get stressed as we will not have it. So, I answered that even if my friend and I had children, we wouldn’t undergo such a humiliating procedure. She said ”ok” and our telephone conversation was over. Anyway, my older colleagues (not too much older than me) went for the pap smear like a flock of sheep with no protests! One of my colleagues, told me: ”Wow, it’s not painful, hahaha – be a modern woman” – can you imagine that!? I’ll never forget her stupid smile and words. Well, mentality is crucial here and if we don’t change it, we won’t do even a little in the matter – whether it is Europe or Asia. But I strongly believe that if more and more women all over the world know this blog, they can tell their stories, opinions and fears and then we can do something about it.

    Cheers

  7. Jola says:

    Hi Everyone
    Please, read this: A Tale of Chinese Hospital Horror (it is about compulsory gynaecological exams of women in China – horrible!): http://www.theworldofchinese.com/2013/03/a-tale-of-chinese-hospital-horror/

    • Al says:

      Interesting article, thanks Jola. I few things were quite striking:

      “Whenever I am in Australia, I go for a full check-up, gynecological exam and complete blood panel.”
      — That’s something I will never understand and will never support. Why does this woman have gyn exam alongside with hear overall check-up? What’s so special about her genitals? Why not heart exam, lung exam, brain exam, bowel exam, joints exam, eye exam, liver exam, kidney exam or anything else? This approach hurts all of as in the long run. Because for as long as we have millions of such brainwashed women on this planet who think that their genitals require extra special medical attention, we will have ob/gyns ruling our lives, we will be coerced into pap smears and pelvic exams at every doctor visit, and we will have a completely different degree of respect for patients between men’s and women’s health care.

      “I saw that one nurse was not wearing gloves at all and the second had torn hers — hanging from the wrist as she used her bare fingers.”
      — I saw an Australian doctor putting his fingers into a patient’s bleeding open wound without gloves on or even washing his hands! After that, all the attempts to complain about this malpractice to Australian medical authorities ended up with nothing: the medical bureaucrats were only pointing fingers at each other. If Australia allows that, what to expect of China?

      “Their goal is not to ensure health; it is to be able to keep records of who is married, who is sexually active, who is pregnant and other personal information.”
      — Considering the lack of anonymous health care services, Australian medical system clearly doesn’t want to be far behind China. Patients’ medical records are much easier disclosed to the government authorities than to the patients themselves.

      “It was explained to me by the principal and nurse of my school that when teachers sit on the same chair as children they can pass any STDs they have to the children.”
      — If that was true, we all would have a whole bunch of STDs after just one trip in public transport! One truly has to graduate from a medical school to come up with a stupid explanation like this!

      • Jola says:

        Thanks Al
        Yes, when I was reading it, I wanted to stop cause it was disgusting. It is depressing too and I am so sorry that such downright humiliation happens to women. And as for the author who writes: “Whenever I am in Australia, I go for a full check-up, gynecological exam and complete blood panel.” – it is absolutely the same as millions of Polish women in Poland do. To them we are unreasonable because we ”don’t care about our female things”. I wonder how many generations must pass so that this brainwashing can disappear forever.

        I recommend you have a look at http://womenagainststirrups.proboards.com/ and especially at this: http://womenagainststirrups.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=questionnaire&action=display&thread=38

        All women should know it and after reading it they should think if it is really worth going to a gyno for another visit to check if they are ”healthy”.

        Cheers

      • Diane (US) says:

        It sounds a lot like what Romania did during the 1970s and 1980s:

        http://www.prochoiceforum.org.uk/psy_ocr9.php

        Let me tell you my own story: I will never forget my first imposed gynecological exam in high school in 1970. They made us girls stand in a row and go into the one-room medical office to be checked by a male ob/gyn. The purpose, they told us, was to get some kind of medical document necessary to enroll for high school graduation and university entrance examinations. How come the boys didn’t need it, we were wondering in vain? I remember some girls were offended, some ashamed, but all of us were afraid.

        ++++

        Ten years later, in 1984, the year of the Mexico City conference and policy, seeing that its demographic policies had been ineffective, the government of Romania began a new campaign to increase the birth rate and restrict abortion. In practice this meant that women of reproductive age were required to undergo regular gynaecological examinations at their place of employment. Pregnant women were monitored until delivery, doctors were required to report all women who became pregnant and gynaecological wards were under continuous surveillance. A special tax was enforced on unmarried persons over 25 years of age, as well as on childless couples that did not have a medical reason for being childless: the so-called “celibacy tax”. Furthermore, investigations were carried out to determine the cause of all miscarriages.

      • Jola says:

        The author and other Romanian women who went through that hell will always remember that horror.

  8. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Isn’t it frightening that so many women believe they need a gynecologist to tell them they’re asymptomatic body is healthy? So sad that many women have lost trust in their healthy body and permit unnecessary exams and tests that expose them to awful risk.
    One one forum a woman was delighted with her gynecologist even though she had very little cervix left, her first cone biopsy had been at the tender age of 20….yet we let doctors get away with this abuse…and even thank them for it.
    It just goes to show the power of the medical profession, vested interests, some high profile women’s groups…all fueling the notion that our healthy bodies are quietly trying to kill us.
    I do blame some women’s groups, they were apparently fighting for the right of every woman to have access to a free pap test every 2-3 years…yet that was turned into an oppressive regime of demands, coercion, awful over-screening and over-treatment; a total over-riding of the legal rights of individual women. I think they walked us into the fire.
    Women’s healthcare took a major step backwards the day these programs were set up, in most countries anyway…

  9. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    I should have said pushed, tricked, pressured and coerced us into the fire, there was never anything as calm as walking.

  10. Kleigh says:

    Diane, that is sick and sexist. I cant belive they got away with pushing that for collage interance. I woander if any of the mothers didnt make a complant.

  11. Pamela says:

    Google Dr. Diane Harper. She was the lead researcher on the cervical cancer vaccines. Her story appeared on my Facebook this am. I was amazed and disgusted by what I read. More girls are dying from the vaccine than from the disease from my count. Her story was pulled from the news before it could really come out. I am not surprised. It is amazing what big pharmacology will do to make a buck, or billions of bucks.

    • Thank you Pamela for posting this information. Here is part of the article:

      “Dr. Diane Harper was the lead researcher in the development of the human papilloma virus vaccines, Gardasil and Cervarix . . . Dr. Harper explained in her presentation that the cervical cancer risk in the U.S. is already extremely low, and that vaccinations are unlikely to have any effect upon the rate of cervical cancer in the United States . . . Harper also mentioned the safety angle . . . So far, 15,037 girls have reported adverse side effects from Gardasil alone to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (V.A.E.R.S.), and this number only reflects parents who underwent the hurdles required for reporting adverse reactions. At the time of writing, 44 girls are officially known to have died from these vaccines . . . Dr. Harper, the vaccine developer, claimed that she was speaking out, so that she might finally be able to sleep at night . . .

      . . . One must understand how the establishment’s word games are played to truly understand the meaning . . . and one needs to understand its unique version of “science”. When they report that untreated cases “can” lead to something that “may” lead to cervical cancer, it really means that the relationship is merely a hypothetical conjecture that is profitable if people actually believe it. In other words, there is no demonstrated relationship between the condition being vaccinated for and the rare cancers that the vaccine might prevent, but it is marketed to do that nonetheless . . .” http://www.realfarmacy.com/the-lead-vaccine-developer-comes-clean/#ov8bWkFI0AwGy8ZM.01

      • Ro says:

        I’m happy to see that yet another doctor has spoken out! I’m also very pleased with the fact that she talked about the rarity of CC and how HPV can resolve itself in many cases. It’s a shame that so much is generally kept from the public. Didn’t they make it a requirement in some US states for girls to have the vaccine prior to entering a specific grade? I remember hearing about it. Nothing like that should be enforceable, especially without proper evidence to prove that there are no dangerous side effects and that it does have great benefit. If only there were more honesty and less greed in this world. I feel so terrible for the families and friends of those girls who were harmed by this vaccine. Stories like this really want to make me go out into the world and do something to change the system, but I don’t know how to go about making my voice heard and I feel as though even if I did, I would only be dismissed as so many others have been. Has anyone here ever tried writing a letter along with facts and statistics to a senator or representative? Maybe if enough people tried and there was enough protest, the government would find it in their best interest to release all of the information very publicly and make it very available to everyone. Depending on the representative and their own personal views, one or two letters might even be enough to make a difference. I don’t know, maybe it wouldn’t do it anything but perhaps it’s worth a try.

      • Alex says:

        I heard of that, too (it was Texas, if I remember right). Supposedly, some schools make pelvic exams an entry requirement (don’t know if this is true, as the tactic of “informing” someone of something that isn’t true is quite possible- in this case maybe to try to make the baseless argument that “it’s common, so it’s fine”). It wouldn’t make any difference in what the situation is, and the ramifications of this being inaccurate & dangerous are not somehow erased by increased frequency (on top of everything else). It’s an attack with a twist, just like if someone got dragged into a stairwell and caught a disease.

        I don’t understand why some people are so considerate. If someone makes something a “policy,” what difference does that make to them? It’s like one’s saying “This is how I want things to go,” and the other one doesn’t want for them to go wanting (it would pain them greatly for that to happen). They want to rely on luck. If someone hits someone else, and then says “don’t hit me back,” what difference does that make? None. Making something a policy (or a culture, or a personality trait, or an integrated situational component/added characteristic, whatever) doesn’t change what the situation consists of. In Lithuania, apparently, it was integrated into the overall situation of getting a driver’s license to get a pelvic exam (it’s been dissolved, now- but it wasn’t, previously).

        I don’t mean to blame people that have this situation aimed at them for other people aiming it at them, but I do notice a bit of a “devoted” style sometimes. It’s like it’s unacceptable for someone to touch their purse or their phone, but them or their kid is perfectly fine as far as they’re concerned. I’ve been on this rant before, so I’ll end off it now.

  12. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    I’ve never understood the huge resources that go into this war against a rare cancer, it seems to me with many compliant or captured women, others see the potential to also, make a fortune. It makes no sense from a healthcare point of view.
    IMO, women are being used in the worst possible way.
    I call it the make-believe cancer, because the cancer most women fear and spend so much time worrying about, being tested over and over again, and huge numbers being “treated”…does not exist, it’s smoke and mirrors, a product of clever marketing, political spin and propaganda.
    There are far easier ways to deal with this rare cancer…and making it the focus of women’s healthcare is insane, it means far more likely risks to our health are ignored. We basically spend billions to harm and distress women. The excess mounts up, regular pap tests or a liquid pap test, add HPV testing, Gardasil….yet we spend little on other rare cancers. Who worries about thyroid cancer? It’s more likely than cervical cancer….so our perception of risk has also, been skewed.
    I’d never believe a word coming from the authorities or the medical profession about Gardasil or women’s cancer screening/healthcare, too many pigs with their snouts in the trough, do your own research is my advice…and protect your life, health and well-being.

  13. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    http://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2013/04/male-gynecologist-tips-connect-female-patients.html

    Wow, read the comments by CountMeAmused, an intelligent, widely read and informed man.
    Music to my ears, keep posting CountMeAmused. This sort of post can really help, some women will stop and give his comments some thought, and hopefully, it’ll prompt them to do some reading.

    • Elizabeth, oh yeah, I heard the birds chirping while I was reading what CountMeAmused had to say. I soaked it all up, but this part had me so impressed:
      “The Womens Wellness industry was designed to take womens sovereignty over their bodies away (ironically). Want birth control? Get in the stirrups. Why? No scientific reason. Want your husband or boyfriend to come with you in support of your exam? Nope, that’s spousal abuse or reproductive coercion in today’s terms. Your significant other cannot be there but the “chaperone” who is a low level A/R clerk working for your doc, can be in the room. In short, the program designs in isolation from all males but the gloved one :) Sorry…being glib. Look, if FDA labeling laws applied to Womens Wellness, the claims, the brands (“Woman Care”) would all be struck.” (CountMeAmused)

      You are right, that dude really knows his stuff.

      • Alex says:

        It’s “spousal abuse or reproductive coercion”? These doctors impose iatrogenic molestation on people & they act as though there’s some kind of scheme to bully or attack the woman going on by someone else?!! They’re SO sensitive to the mere possibility that this other person is making them go to this doctor & get these actions applied to them, but the doctor that actually does these EXACT THINGS is a PROTECTOR?!

        I also wonder why people always phrase it as a “modesty” issue? It’s a self-defense issue. However short the woman’s skirt might be, someone else lifting it of their own accord is a problem. I guess that would be called “sexual self-defense?” Another one could be a “deflection of bodily infringement.” I like that one.

        How about walking into the exam room with a gun & a dog? How’s that sound? A rottweiler and a .45 sound like a winning combination to me.

      • Ro says:

        Wait, so they won’t allow a woman to have her husband or significant other with her in the room? Surely, there must be some legal ground to fight against that. Doesn’t a patient have the right to have a third party of their choice during every exam or consultation? Even in surgery, aren’t you permitted to have one person of your choice in the room? If it is in fact true that they will not allow your husband or significant other in the exam room with you, then that’s all the more reason, in my opinion, to question what exactly is going on. I’m sure money is a big part of it, but it’s becoming more and more apparent that a lot of it has to do with pervasiveness.

    • Ro says:

      Elizabeth – His comments were fantastic. Every time I read the phrase “the exams are not necessary” I feel a sense of freedom and joy. What was troubling, though, is that so many women seemed to argue the point that they were necessary for everyone, even asymptomatic women or those who were not of age where there could be any possible benefit.

  14. Karen says:

    That article on kevinmd… why, why why would women care to “connect” with these bastards. Why they would not want to sue them for decades of assault and scaremongering, and for the unnecessary obstacles in getting the pill, or even basic medical care. Who cares how warm they shake hand and smile? There should be class action lawsuits and no smiles and handshakes. “See you next year” (in bold letters!) No, fuck you, see you in court for assault and endangering my health.

    • Alex says:

      Awesome, Karen! You know I actually forgot the term “endangering health”? All the terms I figured out & I totally missed that one.

  15. Ro says:

    This is a bit off topic from the recent comments, but I found this link over at women against stirrups. http://www.rho.org/files/IARC_AFRO_PATH_UICC_colposcopy_manual.pdf

    The tables on page 30-31 explain percentages and how many abnormalities go on to actual cancer. It backs up all of the evidence-based programs and the studies that have been posted here.

  16. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Male doctors are now faced for the first time with real competition from female doctors. (we now have sufficient numbers or close to that) Previously we had no choice of doctor, it was male or no one. I don’t believe women were treated decently or fairly (to put it mildly) over those years.
    Now some male doctors are crying, “unfair”, oh, really, are they kidding?
    When female doctors started to appear and women asked for their services, the usual response was to ridicule the woman, laugh at her or dismiss her concerns, “he looks at naked women all day”. How is that relevant? Surely it’s the woman’s feelings that matter. Some women felt “silly” or embarrassed asking for a female doctor, like they were something special.

    Now we see more women asking for female doctors, young, middle aged and elderly women and standing firm.
    It’s not true that most older women are “used” to male doctors, many carry trauma from past distressing, even brutal, encounters with the profession. Others suffered male doctors for years and now embrace the fact they can see a female doctor. I know an elderly lady who finally had a prolapse repaired when a female specialist became available.

    Some hospitals and clinics complain the female doctors are flat out while the males are underutilized, well, the answer is not to trick or pressure women into accepting the males, but to employ more female doctors. (and fewer male) If insufficient numbers of women are prepared to see a male doctor, the answer is obvious. Yet some male doctors refuse to see the issue and put themselves first, they’ll shout discrimination (the cheek when women have been taken advantage of and treated badly under their watch) and it’s not right anyway, there are exemptions to the discrimination laws in most countries, that’s why we can advertise for a female or male change room attendant for the public pool. We don’t go around dismissing concerns from the public all day, “don’t worry he sees naked women all day”.

    Many women suffered for years with painful/uncomfortable or embarrassing symptoms when there was no choice of doctor. Now we finally have a choice and many don’t like it….now some will write articles about “connecting” with female patients. The obvious is always conveniently overlooked because you can’t get around it, some women will not see a male doctor, will never feel comfortable with a male doctor, especially for intimate exams and procedures. FACT, time to get over it.

    I also, would avoid like the plague a male who demands he has a right to practice and finds a position were his services can be forced onto women, were women have no real choice of doctor, why would anyone want to work like that, knowing their services will distress some/many women? (the military, labor and delivery, emergency) It shows they simply don’t care about women, their rights, and how they might feel, it’s all about them.

    If I wanted to treat erectile dysfunction or prostate issues and insufficient men wanted to see me, so be it, I wouldn’t make a decent living, but I certainly would not go looking for a position of POWER where men had no choice and I could force my services on them. Male doctors who do that make me very uncomfortable.

    I read there was concern that some males were being put off gynecology and obstetrics, told that women increasingly wanted to see female doctors. I’d want that sort of information before I spent years studying a specialty. (although I would have thought it was obvious information)
    You see when these male medical students get into the hospitals, the problem starts and inevitably women get railroaded into accepting their services. One woman (I read this on a forum dealing with pregnancy and childbirth) was told the male medical student had not viewed a birth, he’d been rejected over and over…she felt pressured to allow him into the room. She felt her labour and delivery was compromised as her overwhelming concern and major source of discomfort/anxiety was the “bloke” staring between her legs. She was angry she’d been pressured when she was vulnerable, she felt used. Now if I was being rejected again and again or men were accepting me reluctantly or distressed at my presence, I would get the hell out of there and find something else to do.
    I just don’t get why these men then complain they can’t get sufficient numbers to use their services. Go into these areas if you so choose, but don’t moan when women exercise their right and reject you. We finally have a say…you are not the only one who matters anymore.
    Time to face the elephant in the very small room.

    • Ro says:

      Elizabeth – That’s another interesting point (that male doctors pressure women into using their services rather than what the patient in question actually wants). Why is the practice of medicine so doctor-centric? The patient goes to seek proper care. It should not be about what the practitioner wants, rather what the patient in question actually needs and will greatly benefit from. Furthermore, the patient is the one receiving the service so it should be at their discretion and their requests should be respected and followed. The medical field is a service field. While it’s certainly different from going out and getting dinner, it’s the same concept. If someone at a restaurant ordered a steak but the waiter said “No, I’ll just give you the salad. That’s what I want you to have,” no one would take it seriously. It’s a very different situation but a similar concept. When you view the practice of the medical field in different scenarios, you begin to realize how much corruption there really is.

      • Alex says:

        Ro, I’ve used almost the EXACT same example in discussions/arguments. You phrased it very aptly.

        Actually, I think it might have to do with Roman society from way back (I forget what it’s called, but I think it has “patronage” or “patrocinium” or “clientela” in the title- it was something to the effect of “client-is-irreleveant”).

    • Alex says:

      Three guesses why the doctors get so pissy about this subject. The men, especially, would take up this subject specifically so they could look at naked women all day (and more, of course). I never understood how frequency of action led to that action not being an issue. That’s like say “well, he’s shot a lot of people- so you shouldn’t be concerned about it.” Complete nonsense said as though it’s a point. What happens is what occurs, however often it occurs or to however many other people.

      I tend to see allopathic medicine as outmoded (if it ever was useful, and it doesn’t seem like it was), particularly with this subject. Most issues are well handled with things that either bolster the body’s own systems or change the situation these situations are in (diet change, for instance, can have a massive amount of effect on numerous things- it seems sugar is a particular culprit with the body’s pH, whether that’s an issue for men or for women). You’re only going to live so long, anyway- and whatever kind of span you have, what takes place in that span is an important point.

  17. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Alex, men who work in porn don’t stop “seeing” women. Male artists who paint nudes don’t claim, “we don’t really see nudity, we’re thinking artistically”. One local male artist stated he loved looking at beautiful naked female bodies.
    Why should medicine be so different?
    I’ve always found the argument they don’t notice or it’s like a secretary viewing a keyboard just plain insulting, do they really think we’re that dumb? I’d have more respect if they were honest about their feelings.

  18. Look at how a male gynecologist on his web site encourages women to make their annual exam a priority at http://www.lupinwomenshealth.com/. This is a marketing tactic.

    Misty

    • Moo says:

      Disturbing as annual Pap smears are not recommended for most women every three years is fine. Only he couples it with “annual exam” . Deception. Bad if women have to pay for what they really do not need.

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        I think the States have too many gynecologists relying on the income from the pointless (but harmful) “annual” exam, even when the recommendations for pap testing were wound back, many stayed with excess…and unless they’re incompetent, they’d know annual pap testing does not benefit women, it harms them.
        Of course, it’s a great commercial decision though, annual pap testing gets lots of women on the “abnormal” cycle of re-testing, colposcopy, biopsy, more frequent testing etc. that’s a lot of $$$…
        ACOG know the commercial value of the “annual” so they were quick to reinforce the need for and value of an annual visit, “even if you’re not having a pap test”….for what?
        Ummm, thinks boys, think!
        Routine pelvic…well, no evidence of benefit, so discuss it with your doctor. Why would I discuss something with my doctor that is of no proven benefit, but carries risk?

        Routine breast – this is still pushed in the States, and yes, once again, it carries risk for no proven benefit, and that’s for women of all ages.

        So what’s left…well, I’ve heard all sorts of weird things…a visual inspection of the genitals, absolutely pointless causing embarrassment/anxiety, and any unnecessary exam carries some risk from false positives.
        Beware, some gynecologists say they won’t “require” a pelvic exam for this or that, but will try to tack on a visual…how can that be medically justified? If one of our doctors tried that and a complaint was made, they’d be in trouble. Are male patients expected to bare-all for a visual or just women?
        Some say women should go in every year for a “chat” and to form a relationship with a gynecologist…why? I have never in my life felt the need to “chat” to a gynecologist or any doctor for that matter. I have a respectful relationship with my GP, but only see her if I’m symptomatic (after giving my body a chance to sort itself out) or need a script. (I occasionally get dermatitis)

        No wonder so many women end up having hysterectomies, gynecologists are surgeons…also, you would start to view your body as a ticking time bomb if perfectly normal functions of your asymptomatic body are being medically supervised.
        It’s only the female body that’s demonized…the evils that lurk within…to hell with that, I think our bodies are remarkable and in most cases, do better with no medical interference. Sure we may need medical help/advice now and then, but this notion that women need to be under medical surveillance their whole lives is dysfunctional thinking.
        Let’s hope more women come to see how warped the thinking actually is and start to trust and embrace their asymptomatic body.

    • Alex says:

      I know you shouldn’t instantly go by a picture, but did anyone notice how evil that guy looked? Dead eyes, devious little smirk, hands on his hips- oh, and that he’s trying to get women to get invasive exams that are also high risk & low utility.

  19. Moo says:

    Most of the exams are pointless and what does happen can usually sort itself out or a woman can use simple remedies such as hydrogen peroxide douche. Warts do not need to be burned off unless they are causing a problem. What bothers me is the $350 prescription for wart cream that is essentially green tea extract in petroleum jelly. HPV is common and usually sorts out by the body. Miscarriages and etopic pregnancies can sometimes solve themselves. Tests done for infertility are useless and only provide information for doctors to select who is excellent for IVF if they cannot afford it. It is all about making money.

    Ever notice how all the interesting research about natural herbal cures is done in China or India. I would urge anyone with any health condition to do their own research into alternative cures and try them. I am tired or being blatantly lied to and misled by conventional doctors.

  20. ChasUK says:

    Has anyone noticed that this site is longer available? http://www.cervicalscreeningproject.com/whatdidwedo/developandtest/phase2/servicepush2
    All about how they can get us to screen, I wanted this for my docs appt this morning, but can’t get it now. It states “The site cervicalscreeningproject.com has been disabled. Please contact support.” And it took my doctor all of 4 minutes to mention screening, quoted a few things from what I have picked up from this site and a few others but as always I never say what I really want to. I had a hard time holding my temper so had to just state “screening is not for me and it is a fully informed decision, no counselling required thank you”. However I have to see him again in 4 weeks so no doubt he will try this again. I hope to be better prepared next time, even though I thought I was.

    • Karen says:

      Oh NOOO… I wonder what made them pull this website down? All that fancy expensive social marketing research stuff, directed to and designed for ACORN group N, M, O, not educated beyond 18, single mothers or one earner… why should we not see how the NHS designs an outreach programme to “capture” the most vulnerable in society…? Oh what would I give for few a screen captures…

      • Alex says:

        Something related to that:

        I was reading something about how there are paid government trolls on internet forums & a link in the article mentioned mentioned deliberate strategies & guidleines to manipulating people. The list wasn’t too clear, but it’s was on firstlook.org & titled How Covert Agents Infiltrate the Internet. The actual title is longer than that, but if you Google that it comes up.

      • Karen says:

        Alex- thanks for this link. It makes me wonder, so then it could be that these women who had cervical cancer 2x before 23, along 3 of their friends are gov agents, not just naive and gullible citizens?

      • Alex says:

        I’d imagine so. Could also be doctors or assorted medical personnel trying to trick people (“Oh, I just care so much & this is so important that it’s okay to bend the truth to MAKE women do it”).

        Or dictatorial women that think being female makes it okay for them to comport other females’ situations (“We have a similar anatomy so it’s like me doing something to myself”).

    • Alex says:

      What kind of stuff does he say? Don’t know what his specific tactics are, but keep in mind that someone isn’t going to announce that they’re lying- it would defeat the purpose. He’s not going to try to facilitate you counteracting his attempts to corrall you into this.

      It really is appalling that someone has to spend their time fending off medical advances! Come to think of it, “medical advances” is a broad enough term that it can apply to anything they try to push on people.

      Here’s some suggestions:
      (1) Talking in a “decided” manner is a trick that might run through all of his tactics & simply referencing that might dial things down a bit. “You have a very decided manner of speaking- am I to interpret that as you thinking that I’ve already consented to these procedures?” might be a good way to do that. Just referencing his “I’ve already decided something” tone might take a bit of steam out of him.

      (2) When he starts arguing, maybe saying “Your attempts at mental vitiation are unwelcome” would be useful. “Mental vitiation” is a somewhat fancy way of saying “mind games.” It’s a mental version of what a fight is physically & phrasing it like that might make you seem more intimidating as a target (and like someone who might be able to throw words around in court- an added reason he might back off).

      (3) After that get into that you’ve “Elected to omit invasive, high risk, low utility tests for something massively rare.” If he tries that “Well, this is a medical procedure” angle, maybe throw in that properties don’t change by designation. That might end everything right there, since you’ve stated what your course of action is & he can’t very well say anything against that without it being a direct contradiction (and thus, an obviously confrontational way of trying get things to happen). He’d just come off crazy if he said that last part isn’t true (and thus, he’s not someone to believe- regardless of his educ

      (4) When he says “Where are you getting this information?”- I wouldn’t bother trying to cite references or anything (since he’s just going to try to discredit whatever you say in an attempt to kick the chair out from under you). Maybe you’d just say “I’m not going to get into that. Besides, it doesn’t matter WHERE you get information- identity does not generate veracity.” Again, hard things to argue.

      (5) Maybe he tries to spit out all kinds of bullshit statistics & scare you by shifting your attention to the possiblity of death (instead of the possibility of life). Maybe saying “That sounds like specious reasoning to me.” Him saying “I went to college” or some such, can maybe be answered by “So that makes it impossible for you to use specious reasoning?” If he askes “What, exactly, is specious reasoning?” you can say “You went to college, you should know.”

      [Just be sure you remember that it means an argument that sounds true, but actually is misleading/false (not entirely sure what the difference is). It kills the comeback if you don't! Keep in mind that there's no way to say something so that someone else can't lie or twist your words- so if he tries a smart-assed reversal, maybe bring that point up. It's what he just did & he doesn't have to confirm it for it to be true- another point worth bringing up, if applicable.]

      (6) All this recorded on a phone or some type of gadget that works for that purpose would add to things, if perhaps he tries to “fire” you as a patient.

      (7) At the end of all this, he’ll probably act very angry & resentful. This is not a sign that you’ve done something wrong. Him acting “attacked” is just a last-ditch effort to make you doubt yourself. That or he’s just pissy! Personally, I’d find that entertaining.

  21. Moo says:

    Do not worry and do get angry. Websites change all the time.

    Depends on what medical issue you are going to see the doctor about. If you are having a pelvic exam or putting in an IUD then refusing a Pap test is much more difficult. Other issues such as headaches or sore foot that do not involve removing your underwear, just say no.

    The doctors get paid to ask you even because of the screening programmes. It does not matter the reasons you give them why they are still going to push it. If they are supposed to tell you that you could die from cervical cancer they will or tell you your risk of cervical cancer, they will but I cannot see the point of doing that at every visit. I will not answer any sexually history questions at all because we have been through all that before and I do not want that type of personal information in a government database.

  22. Karen says:

    Hah! Thanks google cache: This is Google’s cache of http://www.cervicalscreeningproject.com/whatdidwedo/developandtest/phase2/servicepush2.php. It is a snapshot of the page as it appeared on 24 Feb 2014 17:55:49 GMT. The current page could have changed in the meantime. Learn more
    Tip: To quickly find your search term on this page, press Ctrl+F or ⌘-F (Mac) and use the find bar.

    Text-only version

    NHS – Yorkshire and the Humber
    Home
    What did we do?
    What have we learned?
    Real women’s stories
    Improve your service
    Evaluate your service
    Resources

    Define
    Understand
    Develop and test
    Validation Phase 1
    Validation Phase 2
    What is social marketing?
    Supporting information

    Click here to see the full range of feedback from Phase 2 participants

    You are here: Home > What did we do? > Develop and test

    Phase 2 Validation – the ideal campaign; the ideal service

    Methodology and sampling
    Service push
    Service pull
    Service ‘push’: ‘Which creative solutions will this audience have most empathy with and why?’

    This phase took forward the key insights from Phase 1 – specifically that the campaign needs to motivate first and reassure second.

    The campaign concept found to have the deepest resonance with women from the target groups in Phase 1 was based on a powerful image of children losing their mums.

    Based on this insight, Phase 2 participants were asked to give their views on posters and leaflets building on the ‘crying child’ concept. They were asked to look in detail at every aspect of the treatment, including imagery, headlines, supporting messages, logos, language, tone and feel and even the name given to the test itself (smear, cervical cytology, screening etc).

    A wealth of valuable learning emerged, all of which you can view at the link below. Importantly, it enabled us to crystallise what constitutes the ideal ‘creative format’ for engaging women in the key target groups.

    The project team is now discussing the findings and research with national cancer leads in the hope that it can be used to influence campaign materials, including advertising, leaflets and patient letters, in the near future.

    Ideal creative format:

    Imagery

    crucial to be able to read the hurt in the eyes
    image should unambiguously convey loss/grief (quiet crying vs. noisy crying)
    close-up important
    context helps (stairs/on the bed)
    Headline

    needs to refer to smear test
    ‘my mum missed her smear test now I miss my mum’ was most compelling headline
    Support line

    ‘95% prevention of death’ figure effectively conveys hope
    there is also reassurance in ‘find the cells’
    needs to be larger and easier to read (not pink on black)
    Copy

    bullet points
    ‘Their eyes tell a story…you look into their eyes and it tells you what they are feeling’ Younger first timer ‘The one that said my mum misses her smear test would probably get me more…to catch me you’d need those words – smear test.’ Younger first timer ‘It needs to say why you should have it, then the reassurance that when you do have it you’re likely to be OK.’ Older first timer
    Summary of the key learning:

    An integrated campaign catches woman at differing levels of engagement and with different barriers:

    advert imagery – must motivate through emotional connection
    the leaflet – should provide context and reassurance
    the invitation letter – needs to offer reassurance and a direct call to action (ideally an initial national reminder followed by a personalised local letter)
    the service – needs to deliver the promised reassurance in practice
    service providers – need to understand the insights behind the campaign in order to act on them.

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    © Copyright 2014 NHS Yorkshire and the Humber

    • Karen says:

      Google cache 2: This is Google’s cache of http://www.cervicalscreeningproject.com/whatdidwedo/define/. It is a snapshot of the page as it appeared on 22 Jan 2014 00:47:09 GMT. The current page could have changed in the meantime. Learn more
      Tip: To quickly find your search term on this page, press Ctrl+F or ⌘-F (Mac) and use the find bar.

      Text-only version

      NHS – Yorkshire and the Humber
      Home
      What did we do?
      What have we learned?
      Real women’s stories
      Improve your service
      Evaluate your service
      Resources

      Define
      Additional Data Profiling
      Understand
      Develop and test
      What is social marketing?
      Supporting information

      ACORN profiles for the Yorkshire and Humber region and each of the 14 PCTs
      ACORN profiling – what it is and what it does

      You are here: Home > What did we do? > Define

      Stage 1: Define

      Post code data for non-attendees and attendees among the 25-34 year-old age group was extracted from all the region’s 14 PCTs. This gave us a total regional picture and allowed us to see any variations at PCT level.

      The ACORN system is a powerful tool for understanding the different types of people in different areas and neighbourhoods. It combines geography with demographics and lifestyle information to create detailed profiles of each neighbourhood in terms of housing, jobs, income and consumer behaviour (eg what people buy, where they buy it etc).

      This ‘coverage’ data was then run against five geo-demographic classification systems – the most useful of which was ACORN – ‘A Classification of Residential Neighbourhoods’.

      The data profiling clearly shows ACORN ‘group N’ (Struggling Families) to be the dominant target audience when it comes to non-attendance at screening. While this group is consistently prevalent among all the region’s PCTs, two secondary target groups were also identified: ACORN ‘group O’ (Burdened Singles) and ACORN ‘group M’ (Blue Collar Roots).

      Group N – Struggling Families are defined as young, deprived, white females who are often single parents. In addition, this group tend to:

      live in social housing
      have low levels of education
      suffer high levels of unemployment
      work in factories, shops and other manual jobs
      shop from catalogues and cheaper stores.
      Overall, Group N Struggling Families are the most dominant and challenging group in terms of the scope of this project because they face some of the biggest barriers in attending screening.

      However, while this ACORN group is typically centred on younger families, it is a diverse group that includes all ages. Additional data profiling (see link below) shows Group N is also the dominant target group across the region when it comes to non-attendance among older women (35+ years).

      This means insights and ideas developed as part of this project have the potential to feed into an inter-connected strategy and reach beyond the key younger cohort.

      > See additional data profiling for 35+ year group by PCT

      Terms and conditions | Contact us | Sitemap | Accessibility

      © Copyright 2014 NHS Yorkshire and the Humber

      • Karen says:

        NHS Cervical Screening > What did we do? > Understand
        http://www.cervicalscreeningproject.com › What did we do? › Understand‎
        … Burdened Singles and Blue Collar Roots Acorn groups – we needed to understand specific attitudes and barriers which are affecting behaviour among these …

        /////
        I am not able to get this find out of the google cache, goddamit..

  23. Karen says:

    This is Google’s cache of http://www.cervicalscreeningproject.com/whatdidwedo/define/additionaldataprofiling/findingsatregionallevel.php. It is a snapshot of the page as it appeared on 14 Feb 2014 04:58:41 GMT. The current page could have changed in the meantime. Learn more
    Tip: To quickly find your search term on this page, press Ctrl+F or ⌘-F (Mac) and use the find bar.

    Text-only version

    NHS – Yorkshire and the Humber
    Home
    What did we do?
    What have we learned?
    Real women’s stories
    Improve your service
    Evaluate your service
    Resources

    Define
    Additional Data Profiling
    Understand
    Develop and test
    What is social marketing?
    Supporting information

    Additional data planning reports for each PCT:

    Barnsley
    Bradford and Airedale
    Calderdale
    Doncaster
    East Riding of Yorkshrie
    Hull
    Kirklees
    Leeds
    North East Lincolnshire
    North Lincolnshire
    North Yorkshire and York
    Rotherham
    Sheffield
    Wakefield

    You are here: Home > What did we do? > Define > Additional Data Profiling

    Additional Data Profiling

    Within this 25-34 year-old target, we identified (through profiling data from the 14 PCTs in the region) the likely key groups which are contributing to the lower coverage levels and affecting the rate of decline in attendance at cervical screening. The key primary target was identified using the Acorn classification system as Group N ‘Struggling Families’.

    Given that the data planning work has shown such a clear and consistent view on the target groups within the 25-34 year old age band, there was a very strong need to see whether these target groups also stand out in the remaining 35+ age bands.

    Data Analysis
    Findings at a regional level
    Findings at a PCT level
    The data profiling shows Group N (Struggling Families) continues to be the dominant target audience when it comes to non-attendance in the older age groups.

    This ACORN group is consistently prevalent amongst all age bands over 35 years and all PCTs profiled to date. Although there is a greater degree of variation across the age bands by PCT than was evident in the 25-34 age band, the overall pattern is very consistent at a regional level.

    While this ACORN group is typically centred on younger families, it is in fact a diverse group that includes all ages. What they have in common, regardless of age, is high levels of deprivation, unemployment and social housing, the same leisure activities, attitudes and media consumption.

    Other key target audiences. By focusing on Group N (Struggling Families) we can also pick up the deprived groups either side. Both Group M Blue Collar Roots and Group O Burdened Singles share many of the same characteristics and both of these groups are consistently over-representative in terms of non-attendance in all age bands at a regional level.
    Asian communities. There is also a clearer over-representation from Group K (Asian Communities) across all age bands at a regional level. This group was not prevalent at a regional level within the 25-34 age bands and the fact that is showing in the older age bands is significant as this group does not have consistent population coverage across the region. This means that it must be very significant among those PCTs with large Asian populations.

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    © Copyright 2014 NHS Yorkshire and the Humber

  24. ChasUK says:

    Thank you so much for some excellent points. I went in for pain in my hands and fingers closing, all I wanted was maybe calcium as in menopause and feeling a bit run down with thyroid issues. I am not very good in situations like this but one thing I am sure of, is no-one touches me unless I say so! I told him I have looked at screening in general, inc cervical/breast/colon/psa and even he stated he does not screen for prostate cancer, well there you go I said….double standards! I did state how terrible the poster was of the wee boy crying on the stairs, said it was disgusting to use emotional blackmail, he just smiled! Following through with the evidence live conference and the preventing overdiagnosis conference, he was facing his PC and my records and just said “ok”, more of an ok as in enough now? Maybe but not sure.
    Guess he had to complete his box ticking. I also told him I do not need counselling for something that is my choice and mine only and the decision is final, it is just not happening, I do not find any of it acceptable…….he then backed off as he must have noticed I was getting upset bordering on angry. Perhaps he thinks he has councelled me now LOL…….for an elective test! What a joke!
    Now I have a shit load of blood tests and another appt in a few weeks. If he does this again which no doubt he will, I have taken your advice guys and girls and will definately use it. This time I have printed your advice on paper and will just hand it to him. So strange the way you feel when in a medical setting, couldn’t wait to get out of there. I also forgeot to mention the letter I sent regarding opting out of the data sharing, dam next time! I did at one point mention I had some printed info but by this point he was not interested in looking, next time I will just hand him what I had in my bag, a few BMJ studies and Richard DeMay, Margaret McCartney. Thanks for all your support here, thank you so much.

    • Alex says:

      Well, if I might suggest some things:

      Be able to say these things to him & on the fly! Paper is very easy to ignore & he obviously likes this sort of thing (he did smile about that crying child on the poster & how you said it was emotional blackmail- although him acting pained by that & doing the same shit means the same shit).

      I noticed a very “at you” environment in any medical setting. It’s like being aimed at & I suppose they do frequently see people as targets- as well as target numbers. There’s a heavy amount of “this is my house” mentality as a typical thing & if someone thinks that whatever they do is basically outside reality because of that it might very well be a dangerous situation. If they have a confrontational attitude toward the patient to begin with, they’ll treat everything in the manner of a fight.

      I also wouldn’t suggest refering him to this site, even if you do reference different articles & such, since he does seem like he’d try to start problems. I was having a pretty long argument with this guy on Happierabroad.com on this subject recently & suggested the same thing if someone wanted to read it or argue. That’s not to say “Don’t point it out to anyone”- but doctors don’t tend to change & I’ve noticed medical personnel as a whole think that they’ve “arrived.” They’ve been educated, they’re done, and they damn sure don’t want to hear anything from someone they consider an idiot (or anything that amounts to an “off button”).

      That’s not even mentioning the simple fact that some of them very simply join these professions just to have an angle of attack.

  25. Moo says:

    You went to see a doctor about your hand and he pesters you about a Pap test? If he asks again when you come back about your primary concern, ask him if he “knows the difference between a hand and a vagina? Apparently some men don’t.” Good for a laugh.

    Apparently your country has a particular routine for noncompliance for screening. They send so many letters and so on until finally a disclaimer letter can be sent to your doctors practice. This is not your doctors doing but the government. You could complain to your government about this waste of tax payers money. I would not blame the doctor so much though because who knows what his personal feelings are about all the harrassment. Part of the problem is that doctors are somewhat performance rated by their patients screening percentages.

    • ChasUK says:

      Yes I have mentioned that too, targets to meet etc.. I do not wish to sign a disclaimer to avoid access to my vagina, didn’t sign originally. I know it is in case I get cancer later and try to blame my doc, but how can I blame someone who offers a test that I refuse to have, can’t possibly be his fault, only mine and am prepared to accept that kind of risk, its my risk to take, like everyone says here, its a choice. Thanks again for all the comments, much appreciated.

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        The view taken is that it’s safer “for the doctor” to press you to screen, not many women work out they were over-treated, many think they were saved, “what a good thing the doctor forced me to screen”. There was a case where a woman declined pap tests and later died of cc and she sued the doctor. The Court found for the woman because the doctor did not properly point out the risks and benefits, that’s why most doctors sell pap testing in a biased way and provide no information on the risks of screening, it’s safer for them. Now if women received a balanced overview we’d be able to make an informed decision, but as it stands doctors understand we can’t make an informed decision either way, we simply don’t have enough real information. So, safer for them to push screening onto us.

        I didn’t have to, but I chose to explain to my GP why I don’t have pap tests and won’t be having them in future. I know she felt happier because it was clear I understood what I was rejecting. Also, in a 10-15 minute consult it’s hard to know where to start given women get misleading information on screening, so once again, the easiest approach is to push screening.
        Also, screening targets and incentive payments don’t help. Screening becomes good business.
        The starting point though is the official attitude that all women must or should screen, which means this is not ethical or even legal screening, it denies both informed consent and consent itself. (misleading women or using coercion)
        I’d hate to be a GP, the medical associations have sold out to these programs…making it impossible for GPs to act in the interests of their patients.
        Some arrogantly say it’s in our best interests….really? When 77% face biopsies (or more) and the cancer is rare. Screening should be our call and in this case, I doubt cervical screening could be justified from a risk v benefit point of view. IMO, the way screening is approached (excess & non-evidence based) is about maximizing profits at our expense and a shocking waste of scarce health resources.

      • Alex says:

        They don’t actually make a point about the risks & benefits, though. They impose these things on someone to begin with- not asking if this is what they want, after being given all the real information.

        They don’t say “Hey, this is high risk & low utility way of detecting something that’s massively rare to start with.” They don’t mention incentive payments, either. Apparently, a lot of women don’t even hear what these exams entail ahead of time.

        It’s just another guilt-trip. They’re “just defending themselves” & that’s the most innocent thing a person can do [add sarcastic tone]. Never mind that they ARE liable for what they do.

        Oh, and that if they were REALLY so into helping people, they wouldn’t attack them to theoretically prevent false lawsuits. And that if they WERE worried about lawsuits, they wouldn’t generate the grounds for one.

  26. Diane Spero says:

    hi ladies,
    today i talked to a gyn ‘s office to see if they would deal with my issue. ( vaginimous). it was difficult talking wth the office manger!. i stood to up to her, and said its not your decision if i can have sedation or not! like this bitch has all the answers.
    i explained i have alwys had this issues and have never had any help. i told her i can’t have exam
    because my body tightend up, had to tell her a few times! i finally told her to let the dr decide
    what to do! it felt good to stand for my self any say i have always had this issue, and can’t have exam! i do have a consult sceduled. i’ll take it from there.
    why do women hasve suffer at the hands of dr’s who are supposed to help them?

    i am sufferd long enough, i guess i’ll neve get a medical answer

  27. Alex says:

    Not for nothing, it seems like that’s usually a psychological thing. It’s a lot like someone closing their eyes when something comes toward them. Not to pry into your life, but any kind of trauma involving these dynamics or something similar (like getting stabbed with something) can be a cause of this. There’s always simple (and sensible, especially with doctors) mistrust that whoever’s doing this is going to cause a problem.

    Maybe talking to a shrink or just simple self-review would be the direction to go in. Some things are very subtle & it’s a little like avoiding someone because they stink. A lot of that is just simply describing things to yourself honestly. You’re putting words to something, just like with anything else- but you’re not worried about sounding stupid or crazy (well, if you’re doing this on your own). A major point is accuracy & sometimes you have to try a couple of times to find the right words. If the first pass doesn’t quite cover it, try another one, maybe the one after that gets it right.

  28. Diane Spero says:

    What Doctors Don’t Want You to Know About Pap Tests …
    You might have wondered why doctors are so persistent when it comes to your pap test and pelvic exam. You might also have wondered why doctors don’t give y…
    View on forwomenseyesonly…

    i agre with this i have wdsted so mony had so much anxiety trying to have an exam

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