Calls for bowel cancer screening access for over-74s in Wales
- Ageing, Cancer, Health & wellbeing, Culture & Society
A bowel cancer charity is calling for more older people in Wales to be able to access free screening kits.
Currently, only people aged 60 to 74 in Wales are invited to be screened every two years for the disease. Bowel Cancer UK said those aged over 74 should be allowed to voluntarily opt back in to the screening programme as happens in England and Scotland. A Welsh Government spokesman said the programme followed guidelines provided by experts. "It's just sad that whoever decides this thinks that you are too old after 74 for any sort of medical tests," said Myra Smith.
The 77-year-old said her request for a bowel cancer screening kit was refused. Mrs Smith and husband Michael, 76, from Marford, near Wrexham, used to receive the tests, but they are no longer eligible due to their ages. Mrs Smith said she contacted Public Health Wales's Bowel Screening Wales programme to ask if she could pay for a test, but was told "categorically no". She said she also tried her GP surgery and a chemist without success.
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