Bowel Cancer New Zealand welcomes the budget announcement of a plan to fully implement a national bowel cancer screening programme.
“Today’s announcement will begin to turn around our world-worst bowel cancer death rates”, says Sarah Derrett, Bowel Cancer New Zealand spokesperson.
“While this is great news it is disappointing to hear that full implementation may be 5 years away, and that those aged 50-59 will miss out”.
International best practice is to screen those aged 50-74 years of age. While we wait for full nationwide implementation across this age range lives will continue to be needlessly lost.
The budget announced screening will follow the Waitemata DHB region pilot and will introduce screening throughout the remaining 19 DHB regions over the coming 4 years commencing in 2017.
Each year 1200 lives are lost due to bowel cancer in New Zealand. It is our most common cancer, killing as many people as breast and prostate cancers combined, and four times our national road toll.