The new Be Clear On Cancer roadshow will be visiting shopping centres across the West Midlands to raise awareness around persistent tummy troubles.
Tummy troubles lasting for three weeks or more could be a sign of cancer, and the roadshow is encouraging people to visit their GP, because diagnosing it early makes it more treatable.
The roadshow will stop in Coventry: at the Lower Precinct in Coventry on Friday 17 and Saturday 18 March from 9.00am to 5.30pm.
In the West Midlands around 30,500 people are diagnosed with cancer each year – with around 1,520 diagnoses in Coventry and 3,060 in Warwickshire. While about 14,400 people die of the disease in the West Midlands – with approximately 730 lives lost in Coventry and 1,390 deaths annually in Warwickshire.
The roadshows are part of a wider campaign that has been launched by Public Health England across the West and East Midlands, and will encourage anyone suffering from symptoms such as persistent diarrhoea, bloating or discomfort in the tummy area, to see their doctor. These problems can be a sign of a number of different cancers, such as bowel, ovarian or pancreatic.
At the roadshow events, campaign information leaflets will be distributed and a nurse will be on hand to talk to anyone who has any questions.
Around nine in 10 cases of cancer are diagnosed in people aged 50 or over, and the earlier it is diagnosed, the greater the chances of survival. Raising awareness is crucial, as a recent survey in the Midlands shows that only one in six (16%) over 50s would see their GP if they felt bloated for more than three weeks and only one in four (24%) would go to the GP if they had experienced discomfort in the tummy area for over three weeks.
The survey also found many people are concerned that they would be wasting their GP’s time if they went to see them about such problems. The Be Clear On Cancer roadshow team will encourage people who may be experiencing persistent tummy troubles to see their GP and explain that their doctor will want to see them.
Cabinet Member for Public Health at Coventry City Council, Cllr Kamran Caan, said: “Coventry is proud to support a very important cause that we must continue to raise awareness of.
“People need to be made aware of the signs of cancer and next steps and we also need to ensure that people are diagnosed earlier to ensure a better outcome.
“I urge as many people as possible to visit the roadshow to get all the important advice and information that you need.”