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Bowel Cancer Screening Programme

Dr Sandip and Carol lead bowel cancer screening nurse

Coronavirus (Covid-19) has had a major impact on the NHS, including bowel cancer screening services and, as a result, patients may have waited longer than they usually do to be invited for regular screening.  Now that services are running again, they can feel reassured by the safety measures that have been put in place.

Bowel cancer is still the fourth most comment cancer and the second cause of cancer deaths in England. It is therefore important that when you receive a screening test kit you complete it and return it to the screening HUB in the pre-paid envelope provided.

Bowel cancer screening aims to detect bowel cancer at an early stage (in people with no symptoms) when treatment is more likely to be effective. It is therefore important that we encourage our patients to engage with the bowel cancer screening programme.  Every year over 42,000 people in the UK are affected by bowel cancer. Bowel cancer is the second biggest cancer killer and this is why you need to complete your screening test kit. 

Screening is for people aged 60-74 and the national screening programme will invite you to complete a screening test every 2 years. If you are aged 75 or over you can call 0800 707 6060 and opt in and request a kit.  If you are younger than 60 and you are having symptoms then you should contact your GP.

Symptoms can include: bleeding form your bottom and/or blood in your poo, a persistent and unexplained change in bowel habit, unexplained weight loss, extreme tiredness for no obvious reason, a pain or lump in your tummy but other health problems can cause similar symptoms, around 9 in 100 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer, be safe and be checked.

Every 15 minutes in the UK someone is diagnosed with bowel cancer.

At UHNM the service operates over 2 sites, Royal Stoke and County/Stafford.

To protect everyone against the possible spread of Covid-19, screening providers will ensure that social distancing can be observed, and additional infection control procedures have been introduced. This includes the wearing of personal protective equipment by staff such as face masks and gloves.

Dr Sandip Sen, North Staffordshire Bowel Cancer Screening Programme Clinical Director says:

"Measures are in place to ensure that essential, pre assessment clinics and colonoscopy clinics are delivered safely. It is important to complete your screening test kit when you are invited."


  • Taking part in bowel cancer screening lowers your risk of dying from bowel cancer
  • Screening can pick up cancers at an early stage, when there is a good chance of successful treatment. If bowel cancer is diagnosed at the earliest stage, more than nine in ten people will be successfully treated.
  • Screening can find non-cancerous growths (polyps) in the bowel that may develop into cancer in the future. Removing these polyps can reduce your risk of getting bowel cancer

After screening, people with a positive test result will be called back for further assessment. Being called back does not mean that someone has cancer. About 1 in 10 patients who are called back for further assessment with colonoscopy are diagnosed with bowel cancer and 5 in 10 with have polyps.

Anyone worried about bowel cancer symptoms should speak to their GP as soon as possible.

Bowel Cancer Screening

​Bowel Cancer affects around 42,000 people in the UK every year and is the second most common cause of cancer deaths and the 4th biggest cancer in the UK. For every 100 people getting their FIT kit results: 98 will have a normal result, 2 will have an abnormal result. The symptoms of bowel cancer are often attributed to other causes, for example piles, medication, polyps.

It is often not diagnosed until significantly ad​vanced because many people do not like to approach their GP about the issue, or do not realise the significance of the symptoms. The symptoms of bowel cancer differ from person to person and not everyone with the disease shows symptoms.  


  • Blood in the poo
  • Going to the toilet more often
  • A change in your normal bowel habit
  • Lost weight and you don't know why
  • Lump in the tummy

Patients with a positive result will be invited to see a specialist nurse and may be referred for colonoscopy, an examination of the lining of the large bowel (colon) using a tiny camera on the end of a flexible tube.

  • For every 100 people having a colonoscopy after an abnormal FIT test:
  • 13 will have a normal test
  • 25 will have minor findings needing no additional treatment
  • 53 will have adenomas that need to be removed
  • 9 will have cancer


Nurse-led clinics are run at the Royal Stoke Hospital and the County Hospital and full details and clinic times are sent to patients with their invitation. Colonoscopy investigations take place in the Endoscopy Units at the Royal Stoke University Hospital and County Hospital.  

Our Team

  • Dr Sandip Sen, Consultant Gastroenterologist; BCS Clinical Director; Accredited Screening Colonoscopist
  • Dr Srisha Hebbar, Consultant Gastroenterologist; Accredited Screening Colonoscopist
  • Dr Alison Brind, Consultant Gastroenterologist; Accredited Screening Colonoscopist
  • Dr Sarveson Rajkumar, Consultant Gastroenterologist; Accredited Screening Colonoscopist
  • Dr Arun Kurup, Consultant Gastroenterologist; Accredited Screening Colonoscopist
  • Dr Rajeev Desai, Consultant Gastroenterologist, Accredited Screening Colonoscopist
  • Prince Thomas, Endoscopy Nurse, Accredited Colonoscopist
  • Dr Cordelia Howitt, Lead Pathologist
  • Dr Ingrid Britton, Lead Radiologist
  • Carol Beeston, Service Lead Specialist Screening Nurse
  • Gloria Garlick, Screening Nurse
  • Adrian Black, Screening Nurse
  • Deborah Maccioni, Screening Nurse
  • Rachel Owen, Screening Nurse
  • Edna Beaty, Screening Nurse
  • Amanda Baggaley, Screening Nurse
  • Carol Wheatley, Screening Nurse
  • Wendy Walchester, Screening Nurse
  • Angela Power, Bowel Cancer Screening Programme Manager
  • Karen Davies, Lead Bowel Cancer Screening Programme Administrator
  • Louise Booth, Bowel Cancer Screening Programme Coordinator
  • Kathleen Pointon, Bowel Cancer Screening Programme Administrator
  • Diane Jones, Bowel Cancer Screening Programme Administrator

Contac​​t us

  • Bowel Cancer Screening Centre Office: 01782 676643 (answer machine) or 01782 676642 (screening nurses) or Lead Nurse 01782 676641
  • Email:
  • Screening Hub Free telephone helpline: 0800 707 60 60

The Bowel Cancer Screening Centre is open Monday to Friday between 8.00am and 4.30pm.

For further information regarding the Bowel Cancer Screening Programme please visit

For further information and​ support The Macmillan Cancer Support and Information Centre will:

  • Listen to how cancer is affecting your life
  • Provide a wide range of free booklets and other written information
  • Put you in touch with other sources of support such as local counselling services, benefits advisers and support groups

The address is: The Macmillan Cancer Support and Information Centre

University Hospitals of North Midlands, Ground Floor, Main Building, Newcastle Road, Stoke on Trent, ST4 6QG.

Contact on 01782 676333 or e-mail

Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm

Please note, we are unrelated to the local Douglas Macmillan Hospice, despite the word Macmillan in both our names. If you are making a special journey, please ring to make an appointment so you are not kept waiting.


Facebook – North Staffordshire Bowel Cancer Screening Programme


Leaflets and information is available in different languages.

Awareness Resources

Dr Sandip Sen

Dr Sandip Sen

North Staffordshire Bowel Cancer Screening Programme Clinical Director



Lead Bowel Cancer Screening Nurse