Health screening: equity in screening strategy 2023 to 2026

The Scottish equity in screening strategy tackles inequalities within the screening programmes.


Our vision is for equity in access for all eligible people, across the full screening pathway.

Our long-term outcomes

The strategy was produced by a group of people from the screening system coming together to form a reference group. We identified five priority themes where action to tackle screening inequalities and improve equity of access is needed. For each of these themes we have identified the outcomes we must deliver to achieve our vision.

The five priority themes we identified are:

  • Communications, engagement, and learning
  • Access to screening
  • Data collection and monitoring
  • Research and evaluation
  • 'Overarching issues'

We will achieve our vision by delivering on six long-term outcomes:

  • Outcome 1a: All eligible people are aware of the relevant national screening programmes, understand the benefits and harms of screening, and can make an informed personal choice with regards to their engagement across the screening pathway.
  • Outcome 1b: Professionals working to support the national screening programmes are knowledgeable of the inequalities that exist across the screening pathway and use effective interventions to reduce inequalities.
  • Outcome 2: We have a strategic approach to identifying, addressing, and removing barriers to participants across the screening pathway.
  • Outcome 3: We collect and use data on a wider range of person characteristics to strengthen our understanding of where inequalities exist across the screening pathway.
  • Outcome 4: We ensure action to reduce inequalities in screening is evidence-based and have a robust and consistent approach to evaluating the impact of interventions.
  • Outcome 5: We have a whole system approach to tackling inequalities in screening. Reducing inequalities is recognised by all as a priority and is supported by the screening governance groups and the commitment of all partners.



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