Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Know Your Rights: Free cancer screening programmes


Question
My friend has been invited to take part in free cancer screening. I haven’t received an invitation but she says it’s a national free screening programme. How do I take part?

Answer
There are free screening programmes to help detect or prevent a number of types of cancer.
BowelScreen, The National Bowel Screening Programme, aims to find bowel cancer at an early stage in people who have no symptoms. It offers free screening every two years to men and women aged 60 to 69. If you are in this age group you can ring BowelScreen on Freephone 1800 45 45 55 to check your details are on the register. If you are on the register you will receive an invitation to take part in the BowelScreen programme.
CervicalCheck,The National Cervical Screening Programme, tests women aged 25 to 60 for changes in the cells of cervix. Early detection and treatment can prevent cervical cancer. If you are aged between 25 and 60 and have never had a CervicalCheck smear test you can simply make an appointment with a GP practice or clinic registered with CervicalCheck. You can find one in your area by visiting cervicalcheck.ie or by calling Freephone 1800 45 45 55. A letter of invitation is not needed to make an appointment and attend for a first test.
BreastCheck, The National Breast Screening Programme, invites women to a free mammogram (x-ray of the breast) every two years. The screening has been available to women aged 50 to 64 but is currently being extended to also include women aged 65 to 69. If you have not received an invitation you can check if you are registered by visiting breastcheck.ie or by calling freephone 1800 45 45 55.
Screening can help prevent or detect cancer at an early stage in people who have no symptoms. If you have any specific concerns or symptoms you should visit your GP (family doctor).
Further information is available from the Citizens Information Centre below.
Know Your Rights has been compiled by Boyle Citizens Information Centre which provides a free and confidential service to the public. Tel: 0761 07 6330
Address: Elphin Street, Boyle, Co. Roscommon

Information is also available online at citizensinformation.ie and from the Citizens Information Phone Service - 0761 07 4000

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