Local Member of Parliament, Nick Thomas-Symonds, is supporting Bowel Cancer UK’s campaign #thisisbowelcancer, toshine a light on the varied and many people affected by bowel cancer as part of Bowel Cancer Awareness Month this April.

Every 15 minutes in the UK somebody is diagnosed with bowel cancer. Young, old, female or male – it affects us all. Around 268,000 people living in the UK today have been diagnosed with bowel cancer. But it doesn’t just impact the person diagnosed. It affects families, friends and colleagues, doctors and nurses, scientists and researchers. That’s millions of people right across the UK.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK, with almost 42,000 people diagnosed annually. More than 16,000 people die each year of the disease making it the UK’s second biggest cancer killer, but it shouldn’t be as bowel cancer is treatable and curable, especially if diagnosed early.

Mr. Thomas-Symonds is working with Bowel Cancer UK to improve early diagnosis and access to best treatment and care both in Torfaen and nationally. By bringing people together Bowel Cancer UK will create a future where nobody dies of the disease.

Mr. Thomas-Symonds has campaigned to raise awareness of the disease since his election in 2015, and has lobbied to lower the age at which individuals are able to access bowel cancer screening and even secured a Westminster Hall debate on the issue in May 2018: following which, Vaughan Gething AM, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Service, announced on Twitter that Wales would also be reducing the screening age for bowel cancer to 50 as soon as possible.

Nick Thomas-Symonds MP said:

“As the MP for Torfaen, I am committed to raising awareness of bowel cancer, both locally and nationally.

“Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK, and sadly around 16,000 people die from the disease each year. Nearly everyone will survive bowel cancer if it is detected at its earliest stage, but – sadly – roughly only 15% of bowel cancer patients fall into that category.”

“I lost my own mother, Pamela Symonds, to bowel cancer on New Year’s Day in 2018. She lived just under two years after her formal – too late, I am afraid – diagnosis. She was one of the 10,000 people diagnosed annually at the late stage of bowel cancer.”

“I know only too well the impact that bowel cancer has on families and I would urge my constituents to join Bowel Cancer UK’s #thisisbowelcancer campaign and help shine a light on the varied and many people affected by the disease during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month.”

Dr. Lisa Wilde, Director of Research and External Affairs at Bowel Cancer UK, said:

“We want everyone affected by bowel cancer to come together and take action to help create a future where nobody dies of the disease. But we can’t do this alone, and that’s why I would like to thank Nick for supporting our #thisisbowelcancer campaign. With your help we can save lives and improve the quality of life of everyone affected by the disease.”

Visit the Bowel Cancer UK website to find out how you can get involved in Bowel Cancer Awareness Month: bowelcanceruk.org.uk

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