Half (51%) of people invited to bowel screening for the first time in 2015 didn’t take part, according to the latest figures from Cancer Research UK published today (Wednesday) in the European Journal of Cancer.*
Averaged figures from 2010-15 in England showed that those from deprived areas were less likely to participate (43%) than those in wealthier regions (57%) and more women (56%) than men (47%) returned samples from the screening kits sent out in the post.
People who lived in ethnically diverse neighbourhoods were also less likely to take part (41%) than those who didn’t (56%).
The current screening kit requires small stool samples to be taken on three separate days and posted back to the bowel screening unit in specially sealed envelopes.
Researchers from University College London (UCL) examined the anonymous data from 4.4 million men and women aged between 60 and 64 who were sent a home test kit for the first time as part of the English Bowel Cancer Screening Programme between 2010 and 2015.
They found that 53% returned samples in 2010, but this dropped to 49% by 2015.
For those who choose to take part in screening the risk of dying from bowel
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