Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Mail gets its knickers in a twist over your cervix

The Mail is so delighted with its latest miracle cancer breakthrough that the story gets splashed across page one:
The £15 cervical cancer test that could save thousands of women's lives
Thousands of women’s lives could be saved by a dramatic improvement in testing for ­cervical cancer. The test delivers overnight results and is vastly more accurate than the smear test which is currently used to spot early signs of the disease, according to researchers.

Potentially excellent news. But why is the Daily Mail so happy about this? After all, just last month the very same paper was up in arms at one health authority's attempts to get girls vaccinated against cervical cancer - a move that, to use the paper's phrase, could save thousands of women's lives. Back then the paper branded it a "promiscuity scheme" that would encourage teenage girls to sleep around. Why does a test that makes it easier to identify cervical cancer not have the same effect?

For reasons I can't begin to understand, the paper seems to believe that it's better for women to get cancer and then have it detected early than not to get it all. It's often said that prevention is better than cure, but it appears that such tried and test logic has no place in the pages of the Daily Mail.

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