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Sunday Herald Sun - Body and Soul - - REPORT -

Ac­cord­ing to Bowel Can­cer Australia, there will be 20,000 cases di­ag­nosed in 2020. The fig­ure for 2007 was 14,234. were de­tected that oth­er­wise might have be­come fa­tal.

Pro­fes­sor Ian Olver, CEO of the Can­cer Coun­cil Australia, says these re­sults em­pha­sised the pro­gram’s po­ten­tial and a need for fed­eral bud­get ex­pan­sion.

Test­ing 101

Screen­ing in­volves tak­ing a tiny sam­ple from two sep­a­rate bowel mo­tions us­ing the at-home test. These are then mailed to a lab­o­ra­tory and an­a­lysed for traces of blood which may be in­vis­i­ble to the naked eye, but could be a sign of bowel can­cer. If blood is found, the par­tic­i­pant is en­cour­aged to speak to their doc­tor about fur­ther test­ing, which usu­ally in­volves un­der­go­ing a colonoscopy.

Olver says the gov­ern­ment is not do­ing enough to re­duce bowel can­cer deaths and thou­sands of peo­ple would be di­ag­nosed too late while wait­ing for au­thor­i­ties to fully im­ple­ment the pro­gram.

He says if the pro­gram is ex­tended it will save up to an es­ti­mated 30 lives a week.

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