About 4,000 Australians die each year from bowel cancer.  Some 3,600 of them could have been saved – about 850 of them in Queensland. These are often very sad deaths that early testing for bowel cancer can now eliminate.
Each May-June many Queensland Rotarians conduct an educational project on bowel cancer testing for 30 to 50 year olds. It has become most important to avoid family tragedies, and big costs to businesses in what are probably the most productive years of individuals. 
 
Unfortunately, the 30 to 50-year-old year group is not covered at all by the Australian Government’s free test kit program for bowel cancer.  Neither are people above 74 years of age. Instead, those not in the 50 to 74 years age group are asked to buy a bowel cancer test kit from pharmacies for $30 to $40 each. 
 
What Rotary Bowelscan is doing is mostly tackling the under-50 group because it takes around 10 years for bowel cancer to develop – and there are no symptoms until too late.
Using a test kit many of us can discover early signs of bowel polyps that cause cancer.
 
But not using a test kit each year is not so good. In the early 1980s three good mates of mine died from undiscovered bowel cancer in its late stages.  There were no test kits available then. They all suffered badly and the financial cost of their futile treatment was high. So was the suffering to their families, their friends and their colleagues.
 
My final memories of the three good mates aged in their late 40s and early 50s, are marred by recollections of each of them dragging around awkward colostomy bags (which often burst open in cars, homes and public places) and gave an unpleasantness that could have been completely avoided.  
 
Now, at early stages of bowel cancer, about 90% of easily identified “positives” can be cured.  But if bowel cancer is discovered too late, the sure outcome is death within a few months or so.  I urge everyone to think about annual testing for bowel cancer, using any test kit available. 
 
Rotary Bowelscan’s $15-each test kits are available from May 1 until June 28 from 12 at collaborating pharmacies. Rotary Bowelscan test kits are also available online from May 1 until June 28 for $17.50 each.  Just go to www.Bowelscan QLD.org.au    Collaborating pharmacies and Sullivan and Nicolaides Pathology provide Rotary with free sales and processing during the May-June period, as a community service.
It is a Rotary community service now in its 12th year. Please take advantage of it. 
                          An annual bowel cancer test could save your life.
About 4,000 Australians die each year from bowel cancer.  Some 3,600 of them could have been saved – about 850 of them in Queensland. These are often very sad deaths that early testing for bowel cancer can now eliminate.
Each May-June many Queensland Rotarians conduct an educational project on bowel cancer testing for 30 to 50 year olds. It has become most important to avoid family tragedies, and big costs to businesses in what are probably the most productive years of individuals. 
Unfortunately, the 30 to 50-year-old year group is not covered at all by the Australian Government’s free test kit program for bowel cancer.  Neither are people above 74 years of age. Instead, those not in the 50 to 74 years age group are asked to buy a bowel cancer test kit from pharmacies for $30 to $40 each. 
What Rotary Bowelscan is doing is mostly tackling the under-50 group because it takes around 10 years for bowel cancer to develop – and there are no symptoms until too late.
Using a test kit many of us can discover early signs of bowel polyps that cause cancer.
But not using a test kit each year is not so good. In the early 1980s three good mates of mine died from undiscovered bowel cancer in its late stages.  There were no test kits available then. They all suffered badly and the financial cost of their futile treatment was high. So was the suffering to their families, their friends and their colleagues.
My final memories of the three good mates aged in their late 40s and early 50s, are marred by recollections of each of them dragging around awkward colostomy bags (which often burst open in cars, homes and public places) and gave an unpleasantness that could have been completely avoided.  
Now, at early stages of bowel cancer, about 90% of easily identified “positives” can be cured.  But if bowel cancer is discovered too late, the sure outcome is death within a few months or so.  I urge everyone to think about annual testing for bowel cancer, using any test kit available. 
Rotary Bowelscan’s $15-each test kits are available from May 1 until June 28 from 12 at collaborating pharmacies. Rotary Bowelscan test kits are also available online from May 1 until June 28 for $17.50 each.  Just go to www.Bowelscan QLD.org.au    Collaborating pharmacies and Sullivan and Nicolaides Pathology provide Rotary with free sales and processing during the May-June period, as a community service.
It is a Rotary community service now in its 12th year. Please take advantage of it. 
                          An annual bowel cancer test could save your life.
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