The Harrogate Screening Centre manages two bowel screening programmes for men and women across Harrogate, Leeds and York.
The two screening programmes offer screening to different age groups, with bowel scope screening available age 55-59 and bowel screening (using the Faecal Occult Blood Test) from age 60-74. Both programmes are managed by the Harrogate, Leeds and York screening centre based at Kingswood Surgery in Harrogate.
Bowel cancer screening
If you are between the ages of 60 and 74 you will receive a simple test kit which involves collecting a sample from your bowel motion. Using a specially designed prepaid envelope, you can return the kit to the laboratory for analysis. The sample will be analysed for tiny traces of blood and will indicate whether further tests are required.
If the results do show any blood, our team of specialist nurses will see you in a local clinic within two weeks. They will explain what the results mean, answer any questions that you may have and explain the next steps. They will assess your fitness for a colonoscopy in the Endoscopy Departments at Harrogate, Leeds or York.
The test is designed to indicate the possibility of the presence of bowel cancer and also to prevent this at an early stage by removing pre-cancerous growths, called polyps, from the bowel if they are found. By screening for bowel cancer, it is more often diagnosed at an early stage when it is more likely to be curable.
Once people are aged 75 or over, they no longer receive the test automatically but can opt in by calling the free phone number 0800 707 6060.
What our patients had to say
“At all times the staff were professional, patient, helpful and understanding. A 1st rate service offered by the NHS.”
“A gold star service. I was made to feel relaxed and treated with dignity throughout the procedure. The support of staff involved was without question superb.”
Starting at Harrogate in December 2016 and rolling out over the next three years, people aged 55 will be invited to have their lower bowel checked for signs of polyps or cancer.
The test, which takes 10-15 minutes, is called bowel scope screening, or flexible sigmoidoscopy. It involves passing a flexible tube into the bottom to have a look at the rectum, sigmoid and descending colon. If polyps are found, they can usually be removed during the test.
Early diagnosis and awareness of symptoms are very important, so if any problems are picked up we can give you the best chance of treatment.
If you opt out when first invited you can always opt back in at a later date, until your 60th birthday, by calling the free phone number 0800 707 6060.
We are based in Kingswood Surgery, Harrogate, although we work across Harrogate, Leeds and York.
Bowel Screening Office
14 Wetherby Rd
Clinical Lead and Regional Director: Mr Jon Harrison
Lead Colonoscopist: Bjorn Rembacken
Programme Manager: Claire Whitehead
Lead Specialist Screening Practitioners: Melissa Mellis and Michele Worrall-Thomas
Specialist Screening Practitioners: Sarah Boyle, Samantha Bell, Nicola Clipperton, Emma Light, Inger Lise Lingrasmo, Victoria Packwood and Natalie Whitwham.
Lead Assistant Screening Practitioner: Ceri Barrett
Assistant Screening Practitioners: Tracey Fullard and Heather Knapton
Lead Administrator: Kerry Fosker
Administrators: Susan Bowdin and Sophie Richardson
- NHS Choices Bowel Scope Programme
- Beating Bowel Cancer – this national charity that has lots of information with access to support groups and services as well as qualified health professionals to answer any questions you have before or after your colonoscopy
- Bowel Cancer UK – this website provides information about bowel cancer screening, bowel cancer and health promotion information
- Macmillan Cancer Support
- Bowel cancer screening kit: how to use