Making Sense of Screening

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  • Format Texts
  • Language/s English
  • Target Audience Self-directed learning
  • Difficulty Introductory

Key Concepts addressed


Report coverPublic expectations about screening still don’t match what programmes can deliver.

Fortunately, Sense About Science have written a guide to screening.  In the guide, scientists, clinicians and medics explain that screening:

  • rarely benefits all sections of the population.
  • can have negative effects, so it needs to be targeted at those most likely to benefit.
  • can identify some of the people who have a disease but it cannot prevent disease.
  • cannot give you a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer and an ‘all clear’ does not mean you will not go on to develop the disease.
  • screening tests differ from diagnostic tests.

Find out more:

The new 2015 edition of the guide Making Sense of Screening is published by Sense About Science with the kind assistance of the Institute of Biomedical Science and The Royal College of Pathologists.

Contributors to the guide: Michael Baum, Susan Bewley, Michael Fitzpatrick, Danielle Freedman, Peter Furness, Hedley Glencross, Síle Lane, Anne Mackie, Margaret McCartney, Joe O’Meara, Angela Raffle, Hazel Thornton, Ian Watson and Caroline Wright. Further details about the contributors can be found in the guide.


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