Screening programmes have made an important contribution to improvements in public health, but their value often depends on careful targeting. Stratification holds the prospect of achieving high rates of diagnosis and effective early treatment, while sparing lower risk, disease-free people from the risks and inconvenience of screening. It may also reduce overall costs. Using genomic information to improve this targeting is therefore attractive in principle and increasingly feasible.
Stratified Screening for Cancer sets out the PHG Foundation's recommendations on implementing stratification in screening for three major cancers – breast, ovarian and prostate - following our work as part of the European Commission funded Collaborative Oncological Gene-Environment Study (COGS).