Macclesfield Express - - MACCLESFIELD PEOPLE -

●» DR John McKay, NHS East­ern Cheshire Clin­i­cal Com­mis­sion­ing Group (CCG) clin­i­cal lead for can­cer which could be­come can­cer­ous in the fu­ture.

Nearly every­one di­ag­nosed at the ear­li­est stage will sur­vive bowel can­cer yet, in some ar­eas of the UK, only a third of those who re­ceive a test kit then go on to use it.

But we can all do our bit to re­verse this trend: if you are over 60, take the test when you re­ceive it in the post. If you are younger, tell the peo­ple over 60 in your life to take the test.

As a CCG, we have made the early de­tec­tion and treat­ment of can­cer one of our key pri­or­i­ties for 2016.

We’re putting lots of mea­sures in place in or­der to achieve this goal – such as fund­ing ed­u­ca­tion on early de­tec­tion for our GP prac­tices, tak­ing a tar­geted ap­proach to screen­ing, and de­vel­op­ing a fiveyear can­cer strat­egy for east Cheshire.

We also plan to ex­pand the age at which peo­ple are in­vited for screen­ing and to in­tro­duce bowel scope, a rel­a­tively new test which finds and re­moves any polyps which could even­tu­ally turn into can­cer.

The NHS bowel scope screen­ing pro­gramme is grad­u­ally be­ing rolled out to all men and women in Eng­land aged 55.

Find out more at nhs. uk/ con­di­tions/ bow­el­cancer-screen­ing/.

Lo­cal par­tic­i­pa­tion is cru­cial to our suc­cess in im­prov­ing can­cer out­comes, so I would en­cour­age all those liv­ing in East Cheshire to take up op­por­tu­ni­ties for screen­ing when in­vited, as our res­i­dents re­ally are the best weapon we have against this disease.

The test is quick and pain­less, if a lit­tle in­con­ve­nient, but this is a small price to pay if it means pro­long­ing your life.

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