Only 8% of Europeans have had a colorectal cancer test - a figure the EU commissioner of health called ‘alarming’.
Although bowel cancer and prostate cancer are among the leading killers of Europeans, the latest Eurobarometer survey on Health in the European Union shows that the vast majority of European citizens do not undergo colorectal and prostate cancer check-ups. Although generally aware of the importance of preventive medical controls, only 13% of European men had taken a prostate specific antigen test and 8% of all respondents a colorectal cancer test.
Markos Kyprianou, European Commissioner for Health, said ‘it is necessary to improve awareness about prostate and colorectal cancer. Men should consult their doctors about regular screenings.
‘The check-up data for these two types of cancer are alarming. It is, therefore, not enough simply to remind people or urge them to undergo tests. Strong incentives should be built into any campaigns or programmes designed for this purpose. A Commission Communication on Cancer will be submitted to the Member States in 2008 with proposals on how to address this situation.’