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Bowel Cancer UK looks to celebrities in new campaign

Benedict Cumberbatch, Sir Chris Hoy and Stephen Fry offer support to charity
Bowel cancer uk never too young campaign

A range of celebrities have pledged their support for a new cancer campaign run by Bowel Cancer UK.

Stars including Benedict Cumberbatch, Sir Chris Hoy and Stephen Fry are backing Bowel Cancer UK's 'Never Too Young' campaign, which is pushing for testing young people at higher risk of the disease.

The campaign calls for action to address the lack of regular tests, known as 'surveillance screening', for people with genetic conditions or a family history that put them at higher risk of bowel cancer.

Bowel Cancer UK has found that despite the publication of professional guidelines on regular screening of people at higher risk, and evidence that it saves lives, implementation is 'at best patchy'.

Among the celebrities backing the campaign is TV presenter Matthew Wright, whose family has been directly affected.

"My dad died of bowel cancer when he was 56 and most of the men in our family have either died from the disease or survived it. So I know how dreadful it can be. I discovered a few years ago that Lynch syndrome ran in my family, so I had genetic testing,” he said.

“It's so important that people who are at high risk of developing bowel cancer through a genetic condition like Lynch syndrome are tested for it. I'm 100 per cent behind Bowel Cancer UK's Never Too Young campaign.”

A video to support the campaign

Bowel cancer is relatively rarer in younger people, said Deborah Alsina, the charity's CEO, but more than 2,000 people under 50 are diagnosed with it every year, often too late.

"In memory of all the 550 people under 50 who lose their lives to bowel cancer each year in the UK, we are determined to save lives by ensuring people gain access to the screening surveillance they need, so that bowel cancer can be ruled out first, not last, in younger patients,” she said.

Article by
Tara Craig

9th July 2014

From: Marketing

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