Cancer Prevention/Control Programs

Cancer Ribbons Istock web

Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (BCCP)

Cancer Prevention, Education Screening and Treatment (CPEST)

Colorectal Cancer Screening Program (CRCP)

Tobacco Prevention and Control Program


January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month! 

More than 12,000 women are diagnosed each year with cervical cancer and over 4,000 women die from cervical cancer annually.  More than 50% of all new cervical cancers are in women who have never been screened or who‘s screenings lapsed five years or more.  The disease is preventable with the HPV vaccination and regular cervical cancer screenings and highly curable with early detection and treatment of cervical cancer.   

The human papillomavirus, better known as HPV, is the main cause for cervical cancer and is transmitted during sex.  The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that every girl and boy ages 11 to 12 should be vaccinated against HPV before they are exposed to the virus.  Girls ages 13-26 and boys ages 13-21 should get the HPV vaccine if they have not received it already.  

The Pap test is used to identify abnormal changes in the cervical cells (precancerous) and cervical cancer.  Early detection offers timely opportunity for treatment when it is most effective, thus, decreasing morbidity and mortality.  Women ages 21-29 should have a Pap test every three years and women ages 30-65 should have a Pap test every three years or a Pap/HPV co-test every five years.  Women with abnormal Pap test results need immediate follow-up with their care provider for the recommended treatment. 

You may be eligible for breast and cervical cancer screenings at no cost to you!  If you are 40 years or older, uninsured or underinsured, and are a Maryland resident, please contact the Breast and Cervical Cancer Program at (410)-313-6255 to see if you qualify to receive these services.  If you need follow-up breast or cervical tests, the BCCP staff will explain what is needed and can help pay for the cost of extra tests.  If you need language translation, transportation, or some other support, let our program staff members know.  We will try to help you overcome any obstacles that prevent you from getting these important screenings.  

Screening Saves Lives!


Did You Know?

Approximately one out of every two American men and one out of every three American women will develop Cancer at some point during their lifetime.

The goals of the Cancer Control Program at the Howard County Health Department are to reduce cancer deaths in Howard County and to reduce the differences in cancer outcomes among whites and ethnic minorities.

Through the Cigarette Restitution Fund Program (CRFP), Cancer Control  targets seven cancers for with prevention, education, screening, and treatment. Seven cancers are targeted for education:  breast, cervical, colorectal, lung, oral, prostate, and skin cancers.  Three cancers are targeted for screening:  breast, cervical, and colorectal cancers.

The Colorectal Cancer Program (CRCP) provides free colonoscopies to those residents who qualify. Diagnosis and treatment services are available if needed. 

The Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (BCCP), which is funded through separate grants from the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), provides clinical breast exams, mammograms, and pap tests for women who qualify. Diagnosis and treatment services are also funded if needed.  

  • Increase breast and cervical cancer screening among the uninsured, low income women statewide and provide follow-up diagnosis
  • Carry out public and professional education to assure the quality of screening services
  • Provide early detection of Colorectal Cancer by increasing by increasing the number of Maryland adults screened and to decrease racial and ethnic health disparities
  • Work with community partners. State agencies, healthcare entities, resource centers and other local health departments to implement proven strategies to protect Maryland residents from tobacco-related death and disease
  • Prevent youth and young adults from ever using tobacco products
  • Provide resources to assist residents who are ready to quit using tobacco
  • Eliminate exposure to harmful toxins found in second-hand smoke
  • Identify and eliminate health disparities among population groups disproportionately affected by tobacco-related death and disease

The Health Department Provides:

  • Free tobacco cessation to all who live, work, or study in Howard County
  • Fund colonoscopies, clinical breast exams, mammograms and pap tests for eligible residents
  • Provide prevention education for: breast, cervical, colorectal, lung, oral, prostate and skin cancer
  • On-site language interpretation services
  • Services for those with or without in local local community providers offices
  • A Cancer Coalition that meets quarterly to assure the availability of a comprehensive Cancer Control Program for Howard County residents through leadership, advocacy and support of the work done toward the coordination of Cancer control efforts in Howard County (see Meetings & Events page for meeting dates/time)

Please contact us for more information and eligibility for no cost screenings ar 410-313-6265

Electronic Smoking Device Prevention Education

The Howard County Cancer Program conducted Electronic Smoking Device (ESD) prevention education at St. Augustine School.  Schools interested in receiving ESD prevention education for students should contact 410-313-6265.