The majority of research at the Department of Public Health Programmes relates to cancer screening and addresses one or more of our four main research areas:

1. Cross-programme synergies in cancer screening

Health seeking behaviour in terms of participation in cancer screening, risk of positive screening results, risk of having a cancer detected etc. may or may not be associated between the cancer screening programmes. Under this theme, such possible associations are explored, and interventions are developed and tested. The overall aim is to gain benefit from synergies across cancer screening programmes whenever it is meaningful.

2. Increasing participation in cancer screening

Participation is a key factor in securing the effectiveness of cancer screening programmes. Reducing barriers by use of e.g. self-sampling procedures, securing easy access to appropriate information and decision aids, developing and evaluating refined reminder systems, and developing tailored interventions to vulnerable groups may contribute to increase participation. Under this theme, associations are explored and interventions are developed and tested. The overall aim is to increase (informed) participation in all cancer screening programmes and among all groups of citizens.

3. Effectiveness and consequences of cancer screening

Introducing and maintaining cancer screening is a delicate balance between benefits and harms while taking into consideration a better prognosis with possibly less treatment, changes in demand of resources in the health care system, false test-results, overdiagnoses, and citizens' desires. The balance may change over time as treatment and diagnostic procedures change or improve, and as prevalence of relevant risk-factors change within the community. Under this theme, register-based evaluation of effectiveness and use of health care resources are combined with citizen's perspectives on the subject. The overall aim is to secure relevant and continuous explorative focus on the benefit-harm ratio of cancer screening programmes for citizens and the health care system.

4. Screening derived clinical procedures

Positive cancer screening results require subsequent clinical procedures of highest possible standards. Such procedures may require special attention when a new screening programme is introduced, and the need for diagnostic procedures rapidly increases, when new age-groups are targeted or when background risk factors change in the community. Under this theme, collaboration with clinical departments is of special importance. The overall aim is to contribute to, develop and evaluate screening derived clinical procedures in order to continuously secure highest possible overall outcome of cancer screening programmes.


For more information, please contact:

Professor and Head of Department Berit Andersen,, +45 7842 0171