Milton Keynes Hospital is urging everyone over 60 to take a simple test which can save lives and beat bowel cancer.
The campaign, in aid of Bowel Cancer Awareness month, comes after figures were released that 55 per cent of 60 to 74-year-olds were taking the test, according to national statistics released last month. This is compared with 79 per cent for cervical cancer and 72 per cent for breast cancer.
The quick and painless screening test, which can be done at home, will show if blood is found in a stool sample.
An early diagnosis of bowel cancer can be cured in more than 90 per cent of cases.
Judith Stewart, lead nurse for bowel cancer screening at Milton Keynes Hospital, said: “The condition can develop without showing any symptoms or sometimes people assume their symptoms are related to other more common conditions like piles.
“Therefore, it is vitally important those in the at-risk group have the test every two years.
“Bowel cancer is the third most common cancer in men and women, with one in 20 people in the UK developing the condition. Unfortunately many patients are unwilling to take the test.
“For peace of mind or to save a life, I would encourage everyone between 60 and 74 to take the test.”