YORK has among the highest uptake for breast cancer screenings in England, NHS figures show.

Nationally, an average of 76.3 per cent of women aged from 53 to 70 attended a screening in the past three years.

However, York is much higher with 81.4 per cent – the fifth highest in the country.

In North Yorkshire, 80.4 per cent of women attended screenings and 78.2 per cent in East Yorkshire up to March 2013.

The data from the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) for England revealed a small fall in the number of women attending screenings across the country generally.

The NHS Cancer Screening Programme says 70 per cent of women should be screened as a minimum. In London, coverage was 68.7 per cent.

Alan Perkins, HSCIC chief executive, said: “It goes without saying that the impact of breast cancer on people and their families can be severe and life-changing – this is why data included in this report is so enormously important in trying to monitor, evaluate and understand the use and outcomes of the NHS Breast Screening programme in England.”

Earlier this year NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) supported a national cancer campaign targeting women aged 70 and over.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in England, with about 41,500 women diagnosed each year – of whom about a third are aged 70 and over.