Gunnedah’s Terry Hagley knows first-hand the impacts of bowel cancer.
The well-known retired pharmacist lost his sister when she was only 42 years of age.
“I’ll never forget it,” he said.
Mr Hagley is part of Rotary which has been advocating the importance of early detection for more than 30 years with the promotion of Bowelscan kits. The kits aid in the early detection of cancer and people over 40 are advised to complete the simple test.
“Early detection is the big thing,” Mr Hagley said.
In May each year, Gunnedah’s local Rotary clubs sell kits as part of their community health care awareness bowel scan program.
“The test is done in your own home and to cover part of the cost for your kit, and pathology testing of it, a fee of $15, as in previous years will be charged,” Mr Hagley said.
New figures from the Cancer Institute NSW show that by the end of 2021, a further 4,460 people in the Hunter New England will be diagnosed with bowel cancer and 1,460 will lose their life to the disease.
With the assistance of Rotarians and local pharmacies, residents within Rotary District 9650 have seen the lives of 650 people, detected with bowel cancer, extended.
Rotary has also informed more than 3000 patients that they had polymps in the bowel, which can often become cancerous.
“Cancer is a condition that everybody else thinks somebody else is going to get it,” Mr Hagley said.
“We all take good health for granted until we lose it.”
The kits are still available from Gunnedah Discount Drug Store and Karen Carter Chemist.
The Federal Government will complete its roll-out of the national bowel cancer screening program by 2020. This is the last year the Rotary program will be run.