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MP supports bowel cancer screening petition

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BEN LAKE MP for Ceredigion supported Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer to hand in a petition started by Lauren Backler, calling for the bowel cancer screening age to be lowered from 60 to 50, in line with Scotland and international best practice. The petition has been signed by more than 445,000 people.

Lauren, 27 from Eastbourne, started the petition in honour of her mum who sadly died from the disease at 56 years old. Ben Lake MP joined Lauren along with MPs from across the political divide. They were also accompanied by supporters of the charity that were diagnosed with bowel cancer in their 50s or those that have lost loved ones from the disease after being diagnosed in their 50s.

Currently, people registered with a GP and aged 60-74 in Wales, Northern Ireland and England will receive a bowel cancer screening test in the post every two years. In Scotland, people aged 50 – 74 are invited to be screened.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in Wales. Every year more than 2,200 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer in Wales and over 900 people die from the disease.

In the UK, around 4,500 people are diagnosed with the disease aged 50-59 and just over 1,200 die from the disease in this age group every year.

Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer are calling for additional NHS staff and resources to deal with the increase demand on services this would cause in endoscopy and pathology. Including rolling out the already-delayed faecal immunochemical test, known as FIT, which is easier to complete, and provides a more accurate bowel cancer screening result.

The Welsh Government have confirmed that they will replace the current screening test with the FIT test from 2019, but have not yet committed to lowering the bowel cancer screening age to 50.

Ben Lake MP said: “Screening is the best way to diagnose bowel cancer early when it’s easier to treat, and as such I am proud to be supporting this campaign. This an initiative that could save hundreds of lives and I am committed to helping make this a reality for people in Wales.”

Asha Kaur, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Bowel Cancer UK and Beating Bowel Cancer, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Ben Lake for supporting our call for an equitable bowel cancer screening service across the UK. We must do more to save lives from bowel cancer, after all it’s preventable, treatable and curable if diagnosed early. We urgently need an optimal bowel cancer screening programme that includes lowering the screening age to 50 years old and implementing FIT at a sensitive level.”

 

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Former AM charged with child porn offences

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SIMON THOMAS, the former Plaid Cymru AM for Mid & West Wales has been charged with three offences of making indecent images of children.

Mr Thomas, aged 54, was charged with the offences earlier today (Sept 18) at Aberystwyth Police Station.

He has been bailed to appear at Aberystwyth Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, October 3.

At the time of his arrest, Mr Thomas was his Party’s spokesperson on Rural Affairs and Energy policy and had recently taken up a role which would have seen him perform a significant role in Plaid Cymru’s future campaigns.

His arrest in July was a shock both to his political allies and those in other parties in the Assembly.

Following his arrest, Mr Thomas resigned immediately as an Assembly Member and from Plaid Cymru. He was replaced as regional AM by Helen Mary Jones.

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Storm Helene could bring 70mph winds

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WINDS of up to 70mph could batter the county on Monday and Tuesday (Sept 17-18) with a yellow weather warning issued by the Met Office.

Storm Helene is set to arrive on Monday evening at around 6pm and last until Tuesday at around 8am.

Operational Meteorologist for the Met Office Martin Bowles said: “An issue is that trees are in full leaf and so are more likely to be blown over in strong winds than they would be in the middle of winter.

“That could be a problem.

“The storm will head straight up through the Irish Sea and across the North of England on Monday night, bringing some heavy rain and some strong winds.

“We have updated some areas to a yellow warning.”

Motorists are advised to allow extra time for their journeys and take extra care on the roads.

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Police confirm body found following Belgrave House fire

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POLICE have confirmed that remains of a male have been recovered during the search at Belgrave House Hotel, Aberystwyth.

The remains have not yet been identified.

The family of the missing Lithuanian man have been informed of this development.

H.M.Coroner has been updated and a Home Office post mortem has been arranged

The search of the scene continues.

Police are in consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service over this development.

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