End of the line for Rotary bowel cancer program

Rotarians Max Carey and Kevin Sharp encourage others to take part in the Bowelscan program, which is taking place again in May.

Rotarians Max Carey and Kevin Sharp encourage others to take part in the Bowelscan program, which is taking place again in May.

2017 will be last year Rotary will be involved in making Bowelscan testing kits available.

Rotary has been conducting a Bowelscan awareness programs for the past 32 years. The first program in 1986 was instigated by the Rotary District Governor Bob Young in our area.

Each year since then Rotary clubs have been making available Bowelscan kits in our district, which extends from Armidale and Tamworth in west as far as Coffs Harbour in North. 

The program has gradually expanded through all of NSW and other eastern states and as far west as Western Australia.

During the 32-year period Rotary has been making these kits available each year, many have been diagnosed with bowel cancer and that early diagnosis could have saved their lives. 

Kits have been sold by each Rotary club and by local chemists in each town making them easily available to many people. 

More than 80 per cent of kits sold have been returned for testing, a much better result than those supplied free by the government.

As demand has gradually reduced over past few years with kits being supplied by government to over 50s at five-year intervals, this is the last year Rotary will be involved in making bowelscan testing kits available.

Kits will be available from Rotary Clubs and most pharmacies during May.

Take this opportunity to purchase a kit. This simple test could provide early detection which could save your life.

Don’t wait until 2020 when you reach 50 years of age to have a Bowelscan test. People under 50 have been diagnosed with bowel cancer.

Ninety per cent of bowel cancer can be cured if detected early.

Bowel cancer is the second most common cancer in Australia after skin cancer. Each year, there are over 7000 new cases of bowel cancer in men and over 6000 cases in women. Most cases of bowel cancer begin with the development of benign polyps.

Polyps are finger-like growths from the wall of the intestine that protrude into the intestinal cavity. These benign polyps are not cancer and relatively common in people over age 50. Polyps can become cancerous though, and the cancer may invade the normal bowel.

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