In April Cancer Council SA is putting bowel cancer in the spotlight. If you’re aged between 50 and 74, this month is your chance to make sure you’re up to date with your two-yearly bowel cancer screening test, which can detect early stages of bowel cancer or pre-cancerous growths. It’s also a great opportunity for all South Australians to get empowered and learn how to cut their bowel cancer risk.
Eligible people aged 50 – 74 are sent a free home test kit to the address listed with Medicare or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs every two years from the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program. To check when your home test kit will arrive or order a replacement kit call 1800 627 701.
Learn more in the links below.
Patients are more motivated to take part in a program if a primary care provider or practice nurse recommends participation.
General practices can encourage their patients to participate by:
- displaying brochures, flyers and posters (see resources link below)
- talking to patients aged 50 to 74 about bowel screening and why it is important
- showing patients how to use a kit using an animated demonstration video
- sending a letter or SMS to 49-year-old patients to encourage participation.
Example SMS: Around your 50th birthday you will be sent a free bowel screening kit. Please do this test – screening saves lives. Dr XXXX / Nurse Practitioner XXXX.
National Cancer Screening Register for health professionals
The National Cancer Screening Register supports the National Cervical Screening Program and the National Bowel Screening Program.
Healthcare professionals with a Medicare Provider Number (MPN), or nurses and medical staff acting as a delegate of a healthcare provider with an MPN, can access the register via the Healthcare Provider Portal to:
- order a home test kit for patients aged 50-74 who are overdue for bowel screening or have never completed a test. The test is sent to the address the patient has listed with Medicare
- access patients screening history
- retrieve test results prior to appointments to aid discussions with patients
- submit forms and reports electronically
- update patient participation information
For more information or to access the Healthcare Provider Portal visit the National Cancer Screening Register website.