GSK, APL Health and Prospectus give staff time off to attend cervical screenings

doctor's appointment

APL Health, GSK Uk Pharmaceuticals, Middlesborough Council, Pelican Healthcare and Prospectus are among the employers that have joined a campaign to allow female staff off time during the working day to attend cervical screenings.

The Time to Test campaign, run by UK charity Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, encourages organisations to allow female employees to attend smear tests during the working day if they are unable to make appointments outside of working hours.

Employers that sign up to raise awareness of cervical cancer are also asked to ensure staff are provided with key information such as what the symptoms of cervical cancer are and where employees can find support and help.

Action for Charity, APL Health, GSK UK Pharmaceuticals, Illamasqua, Irwin Mitchell, Middlesborough Council, NHS England, Pelican Healthcare, Prospectus, The & Partnership and Valspar Consumer have all joined the campaign.

Dannii Portsmouth, HR business lead at GSK UK Pharmaceuticals, said: “As a healthcare [organisation], we know that the health and wellbeing of our employees is paramount and we have a responsibility to help remove any barriers they may face in going for screening. We appreciate that sometimes it’s not always possible or practical to arrange these appointments outside of the working day and this is why we’re supporting Time to Test.”

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Becky James, health improvement specialist, early intervention and prevention at Middlesbrough Council, added: “It fits with the message we are trying to promote around the importance of screening and ensuring that staff don’t feel there are barriers in place that stops them from attending for appointments. We hope that signing up to Time to Test will further raise awareness of cervical screening and encourage our employees to take time needed to look after their health.”

Andy Hollis, regional supervisor at Valspar Consumer, Europe, said: “We decided to join the Time to Test campaign [because] we were supporting Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust through a 24-hour Three Peaks challenge and this sounded like another great opportunity to raise awareness of cervical cancer prevention. Valspar is all about people so as [an organisation] with a younger workforce, many of whom are female, our employees’ health is very important to us.”