Cancer Prevention and Screening


About half of all cancers can be prevented through healthy living. The Canadian Cancer Society recommends the following to reduce your risk of cancer:

  • Eat a healthy diet
    Choose a healthy diet high in vegetables, fruits, fibre, and whole grain products and low in red meat, processed meat and salt.
  • Be physically active
    Do at least 30 minutes of physical activity daily.
  • Avoid or limit alcohol and drugs
    Research shows that drinking any type of alcohol increases your risk of cancer. If you choose to drink alcohol, limit it to one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.
  • Be smoke free
    Avoid smoking and exposure to second hand smoke.
  • Be sun safe
    Reduce exposure to the sun by wearing sunscreen, a hat, and clothing to cover your skin.  Read more sun safety tips here.
  • Get screened 
    You can detect breast, cervical and colorectal cancers through early screening.

Breast cancer

If you are a woman 50 to 74 years old, you should have a mammogram every two years.

If you are a woman 30 to 69 years old at high risk for breast cancer (personal or family history of breast cancer), you should have a mammogram and MRI every year.

Book your appointment

You can book your appointment for a mammogram by calling the Ontario Breast Screening Program (OBSP) at 1-800-661-8897

or by calling your local OBSP program directly:

  • North Bay:  705-495-7930
  • Parry Sound:  705-746-4540 ext. 3602

Be breast aware

Be aware of how your breasts normally look and feel so that you will notice any changes. Your breasts may feel different at different times of your menstrual cycle. Breast tissue also changes with age. Most changes are not cancerous, but you should have them checked by a doctor.

Learn how you can reduce your risk of breast cancer on the Canadian Cancer Society webpage.

Cervical cancer

A regular Pap test could save your life! The Pap test can detect early changes that could become cervical cancer. The biggest risk factor for cervical cancer is infection of the cervix by the human papillomavirus (“HPV”). HPVs are a group of viruses that live on the skin and can be passed from person to person through any kind of sexual touching.

Get tested every three years

Starting at age 21, if you are or have ever been sexually active, you should have a Pap test every three years.

Once you are 70 years of age, and have had three or more normal Pap tests in the last 10 years, you may stop getting Pap tests.

Find more information about PAP tests from the Canadian Cancer Society.

Reduce your risk!

To reduce your risk of cervical cancer, you should also:

  • Be a non-smoker
  • Limit your exposure to HPV
  • Get vaccinated with the HPV vaccine

Colorectal cancer

Colon cancer is curable in nine out of 10 cases if found early. The Fecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT) is a painless take-home test used to identify changes that could become colorectal cancer. Screening every two years is recommended for all adults aged 50-74. 

A FOBT kit could save your life!

To get a take-home FOBT kit:

  • Make an appointment to visit your healthcare provider today
  • Call Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-828-9213 if you don't have a healthcare provider

Use the MyCancerIQ tool to find out about how to reduce your risk of colon cancer. If anyone in your family has had colon cancer, find out from your healthcare provider if early screening is appropriate for you.

Learn more about screening for colon cancer through Cancer Care Ontario.

North Bay

345 Oak Street West

Parry Sound

70 Joseph Street Unit #302

Burk's Falls

17 Copeland Street (by appointment only)