Kia ora whānau,
Did you know that bowel cancer is the second highest cause of cancer death in New Zealand? Around 3000 of us will be diagnosed and 1200 will die of it each year.
But catching it early can save lives and all it takes to find it is a quick and easy test you can do at home.
The National Bowel Screening Programme is being rolled out across the Waikato region with the aim of reducing the devastating impact bowel cancer has on our communities.
If you're aged between 60 and 74, you will receive a test kit in the mail every two years around the time of your birthday. If that's on an even day (2nd, 4th, 6th) of the month you will receive a kit this year while those on an odd day (e.g 1st, 3rd, 5th) will get theirs in the programme's second year.
The test comes with clear instructions and will help detect early warning signs of bowel cancer. It is free for people aged 60-74 who are eligible for publicly funded healthcare.
If you're not in the screening age range and you have a family history of bowel cancer, you could be entitled to a colonoscopy. Talk to your GP for more information.
If you have symptoms of bowel cancer, don’t wait for screening, talk to your doctor now. Common symptoms of bowel cancer may include:
• a change in your normal bowel habit that continues for several weeks
• blood in your bowel motion.
Although these symptoms are usually caused by other conditions, it’s important to get them checked.
We're encouraging those in the eligible age group to complete the test and send it back, and for whānau to talk to their loved ones about the importance of getting tested.
Do it for you, do it for your whānau.
For more information, visit the Time to Screen website, call 0800 924 432 or talk to your doctor.
How are you commemorating Anzac Day? What stories have been passed down through your whānau?
April 25 marks the 106-year anniversary of the Gallipoli landings, one of the most costly campaigns for the Allied Forces during World War I.
Anzac dawn and commemorative services up and down the country are scheduled to get underway after widespread cancellations last year, due to the nation being under Alert Level 4 restrictions.
The NZDF have advised of a reduced presence of military personnel at Anzac services due to deployment at MIQ facilities.
You can check out where the Anzac day services are on this interactive map on the RSA website.
Feel free and share your stories below and don't forget to type NFP if you don't want your comments used in the Hamilton Press.
An interesting mid week fact.