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Pink rubbish truck hits the road

27 March 2012

What’s pink with 6 wheels and could save your life?
The answer is a new brightly coloured refuse truck bought by the Parish of St Helier, who have joined forces with Jersey’s Public Health department to ensure that women in the Island are getting important messages about their health.
From today, Tuesday 27 March, people who work or shop in town will see the newest addition to the parish fleet not only keeping St Helier’s streets clear of refuse but also acting as a slow moving, visual reminder about the importance of breast screening and cervical smears.
Constable Simon Crowcroft explained that the truck was purchased as part of the parish’s vehicle replacement programme to ensure that modern, efficient vehicles are available to enable the department to carry out their daily tasks. This particular vehicle will be on the roads at least 5 days a week, collecting cardboard for recycling before switching to collect commercial refuse.

Ideal for carrying messages

The idea to use it to carry public health related messages came from the parish’s Director of Municipal Services, Debra D’Orleans.
Mrs D’Orleans was at a trade show in the UK last year when she was looking at potential new trucks – and the offer from one supplier in particular fitted the bill. “They told me we could have a truck in any colour, and I jokingly asked if they could supply us with a pink one,” she said. “We are very pleased to be able to help with this important work reminding women about regular health checks. The sides of the truck are ideal for carrying messages, and we think it will be a real talking point.”
The parish already had blue refuse trucks with eye-catching recycling logos, which had attracted attention, and Mrs D’Orleans, who used to work for the Public Health department, was pleased to be able to take the idea one step further. Such a truck had already been used in the UK, promoting Cancer Research. 
Mirium Prior, clinical and service effectiveness manager at Public Health said “We are pleased that 12,000 women in Jersey came forward last year for breast screening or cervical screening and some women had both. But we are concerned for the 1,500 women of eligible age for screening who haven't attended yet, since breast cancer and cervical cancer are highly treatable if an abnormality is found early - for example through a screening test.
"As there is no central address database the department can use to call women for screening programmes, they are reliant on women booking themselves, or being reminded by their GP. Some women may not know that Jersey has screening available or how to arrange an appointment.
"We run regular campaigns for these screening programmes, but any new way of reminding women to come forward is always welcome. So, when the parish of St Helier approached us with the offer of using the side of the truck to send out a message, we were very pleased to take it up. It’s an eye catching talking point and hopefully acts as a reminder to women to register for screening and attend their screening appointments." 

Book an appointment

 To register for screening or book an appointment, women aged 50 - 69 who haven't had a breast screen in the last 2 years should call the Breast Screening Clinic, and women aged 20-64 who haven't have a cervical smear test in the last 3 years should contact their GP or call the Cervical Screening Clinic.
Breast screening is performed at the General Hospital in the Le Quesne Unit by all female staff. Women who go to their GP for a smear test can ask for a female GP or practice nurse and if women opt to go to Le Bas Centre for a smear test, all the staff are female. 
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