Dr Gaduzo - holding BCOC sign

NHS Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is supporting the Be Clear on Cancer Bowel Cancer Screening campaign.

A Be Clear on Cancer bowel cancer screening awareness campaign launched across the North West on Monday 9 January and will run until the end of March 2017.

The campaign aims to raise awareness of and promote participation in the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme among those who are eligible to participate (i.e. 60 – 74 year olds).

People in this age bracket who are registered with a GP will receive an NHS bowel cancer screening kit through the post every two years. Bowel cancer screening is a simple and private test that can be done at home. It is designed to detect early signs of bowel cancer.

The key message of the campaign is “This little kit could save your life”, and is supported by secondary messages that aim to overcome some common misconceptions about bowel screening, such as the test “is meant for people with no symptoms” and “it can find bowel cancer at an early stage, when it is easier to treat successfully”.

Peter, WBM poster

Adverts will appear on TV (ITV), on bus stops and billboards, on the inside of buses (Merseyside only), in regional newspapers and personal stories of people who have taken part in bowel screening will appear on Facebook. A direct mailing which endorses the Bowel Cancer Screening Programme, will also be sent to some people living in the North West who receive a bowel cancer screening kit between 20 February and 31 March 2017.

Anne Mackie, Director of Screening, Public Health England explained “It is important that we raise awareness of the Bowel Cancer Screening Programme and highlight that screening is a choice.”

Every year, 2000 people aged 60 – 74 are diagnosed with bowel cancer in the North West and 600 people of the same age in the region will die from the disease.

Bowel cancer screening has been shown to reduce the risk of dying from bowel cancer by 16 per cent. When bowel cancer is diagnosed at the earliest stage, more than nine in 10 people will survive the disease for more than five years.

Dr Giresh Patel from Manchester, who is supporting the campaign, said: “I recommend that my patients complete their bowel screening test when it arrives through the post because it’s one of the best ways to find bowel cancer early, when it’s easier to treat successfully. I also encourage everyone to read the leaflet sent with their test kit, to help them decide whether to take part because bowel cancer screening is a personal choice.”

For more information visit www.cruk.org.uk/beclearoncancer or call the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Helpline on Freephone 0800 7076060.