HPV Detection Rate Benchmarking
One of the key elements of quality assessment for the National Cervical Screening Program is for pathology laboratories to routinely assess their HPV detection rate ('positivity rate'). Laboratories are expected to compare the HPV detection rate in samples of at least 2000 screening specimens against national benchmarks. Data should be restricted to screening samples and to women aged 25 years or over at the time of testing.
The NCSR provides overall and stratified benchmarks which will allow laboratories to assess their detection rates against national averages. The NCSR stratifies benchmark detection rates by age cohorts (born before/after June 30, 1980) labelled as Pre and Post 1980.
As described in the National Pathology Accreditation Advisory Council’s Requirements for laboratories, reporting tests for the National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP) pathology laboratories must notify the NCSP Quality and Safety Monitoring Committee where a batch does not fall within the expected national average.
Guidance for pathology labs is available from the Guidelines for handling HPV positivity rate quality management process. This includes information on:
- how to calculate the HPV positivity rate and provides examples of how to interpret results
- how to notify the NCSP Quality and Safety Monitoring Committee
- how the NCSP will manage notifications from pathology laboratories about a Query batch.
HPV Positivity Rate National Benchmark (Released 11 April 2019)
Please note that following this April 2019 publication, the National Cervical Screening Program Quality and Safety Monitoring Committee has agreed that the HPV Positivity Rate National Benchmark update will become quarterly rather than monthly. The next publication can be expected 5 July 2019.
National Benchmark Rates (current as at 4 April 2019) are calculated using Registry data collected from 6 Dec 2018 to 6 Mar 2019 using screening samples only for women aged >=25 years at the time of testing. This month's benchmark has been generated using a three month rolling calculation (91 day window for specimen collection).
- Overall National Benchmark Rate: 8.6%
- Pre-1980 cohort: 5.9%
- Post-1980 cohort: 13.8%
The following zip file contains instructions, charts, and tables that facilitate comparison to these benchmark rates.
The following are previous month rates:
|HPV Positivity rate - date published||Overall||Pre 1980||Post 1980|
|1 March 2019||8.6%||5.9%||13.9%|
|1 February 2019||8.5%||5.9%||13.7%|
|11 January 2019||8.4%||5.9%||13.6%|
|11 December 2018||8.5%||6.0%||13.7%|
|9 November 2018||8.6%||6.1%||13.9%|
|5 October 2018||8.7%||6.1%||14.0%|
|7 September 2018||8.6%||6.1%||13.9%|
|3 August 2018||8.6%||6.1%||14.1%|
|6 July 2018||8.7%||6.2%||14.2%|
|1 June 2018||8.9%||6.2%||14.7%|
|4 May 2018||9.1%||6.3%||14.9%|
|6 April 2018||9.0%||6.2%||14.8%|
|9 March 2018
|9 February 2018
|5 January 2018
HPV positivity rate archive
Please visit HPV positivity rate – archive for full details of the above and earlier rates.