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Bowel screening saves lives


Published on 13 Mar 2013

NHS Western Isles is promoting the groundbreaking national campaign, which has been launched to encourage people between the ages of 50 and 74 to participate in bowel screening.

People in the Western Isles may have already seen the national advert, which features the voice of Still Game star Ford Kiernan speaking to a man sitting on the toilet, encouraging him to take the bowel screening test.

It carries the message 'Bowel Cancer. Don't Take A Chance. Take The Test' and aims to highlight the fact that bowel cancer is a 'hidden' cancer, because the early signs are often not visible.

It also promotes the message that nine out of 10 people will survive bowel cancer if it is detected early.

In addition, from April 2013, the bowel screening programme is being extended so that those over the age of 74 will be able to request a screening kit every two years.

Health Secretary Alex Neil said: "Bowel cancer is the third most common cancer in Scotland.

 "The earlier bowel cancer is detected the easier it is to treat and the better the chance of a successful outcome. That is why bowel screening is so important.

"I would urge all men and women, between 50 and 74 to do their screening test when it comes through their door."

NHS Western Isles Medical Director Dr James Ward said: "Here in Scotland, every year the equivalent of four people a day die from bowel cancer. This screening programme is very simple, but very effective. It saves lives by detecting problems early and spotting symptoms that people may not know they have.

"Lots of information is provided with the kit when it arrives through the letterbox and the programme also has a great deal of information which people can access whenever it is convenient for them at www.bowelscreening.scot.nhs.uk. This includes a short film which explains more about the test and how to complete this.

"If you receive the test, please take it. It could just save your life."

Contact:

Maggie Fraser

Communications Manager

01851 708060

07810527457