Bowel cancer screening resources

On this page, you’ll find links to useful information and resources relating to bowel cancer screening for health and social care professionals, patients and service-users.

This section provides links to resources on bowel cancer screening for health and social care professionals. Some of these resources may also be beneficial for patients and service-users.

This section provides information on bowel cancer screening for patients and service-users, including specific audiences and information in accessible formats.

Male lifetime screening pathway

A short video for patients by the UK National Screening Committee explaining more about the bowel cancer screening pathway for men.

Female lifetime screening pathway

A short video for patients by the UK National Screening Committee explaining more about the bowel cancer screening pathway for women.

An NHS overview of bowel cancer screening for patients

An overview of the the NHS bowel cancer screening programme and description of the screening pathway.

What is bowel cancer?

An NHS overview of bowel cancer, including symptoms, causes, test and treatment.

Bowel polyps

An explanation of what polyps are, symptoms, diagnosis, treatments, causes and how they relate to bowel cancer.

NHS bowel cancer screening – helping you decide (PDF)

A patient information leaflet about bowel cancer screening, with guidance on correctly using the FIT kit.

How to use a FIT kit

Patient information on how to use the FIT kit. Available in several languages.

Bowel cancer screening: colonoscopy

This leaflet provides information on having a colonoscopy if further tests are needed after using the NHS bowel cancer screening test kit. Available in several languages.

What is a colonoscopy?

NHS website with information about the colonoscopy, how and why it’s done and the results.

What happens during a colonoscopy?

An NHS video for patients explaining the colonoscopy procedure.

Bowel cancer screening: having a CTC scan (PDF)

Information for patients about the CTC scan as part of NHS bowel cancer screening.

NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme: Colonoscopies for patients with Lynch syndrome (PDF)

Helping you decide: providing an overview of what Lynch Syndrome is, risks and benefits of having a colonoscopy and taking part in bowel cancer screening.

Easy read formats

Guide: An easy guide to bowel cancer screening (PDF)

This leaflet can be used by health professionals, family and carers to explain the Bowel Cancer Screening Programme to people with learning disabilities.

Guide: An easy guide to having a colonoscopy

This leaflet can be used by health professionals, family and carers to explain the colonoscopy procedure to people with learning disabilities.

Guide: Bowel cancer screening: an easy guide to having a CTC scan (PDF)

This leaflet can be used by health professionals, family and carers to explain the CTC procedure to people with learning disabilities.

Guide: colonoscopies for people with Lynch Syndrome (PDF)

This leaflet can be used by health professionals, family and carers to explain colonoscopies to Lynch Syndrome patients with learning disabilities.

British Sign Language (BSL)

Bowel cancer screening letters: BSL signed content

Bowel cancer screening providers can direct people with hearing loss who use British Sign Language (BSL) to the above BSL signed versions of the national letter templates as appropriate.

Animated formats

Beyond words: An Easy Guide to Bowel Cancer Screening (PDF)

This booklets can be used by health professionals, family and carers to explain the Bowel Cancer Screening Programme to people who cannot read or do not like written words.

Beyond words: An Easy Guide to Having a Colonoscopy (PDF)

This booklets can be used by health professionals, family and carers to explain colonoscopies to people who cannot read or do not like written words.

Using your bowel cancer screening kit

This short animation explains how to use your bowel cancer screening kit. Subtitles are available in English, as well as Arabic, Bengali, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Farsi, Gujarati, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi and Urdu. A British Sign Language version is also available.

Braille 

Resources in braille can be obtained by contacting the London Bowel Screening Hub on (freephone) 08007076060.

 

Bowel Cancer UK

UK bowel cancer charity.

Cancer Research UK

UK registered charity. Independent funder of cancer research.

Chron’s and Colitis UK

UK charity for people diagnosed with Crohn’s disease or Colitis.

Guts UK

UK charity funding research into the digestive system from top to tail.

Macmillan Cancer Support

UK charity supporting people living with cancer.

Your next poo could save your life

Webpage with information and resources designed to encourage patients to take part in bowel cancer screening when invited.

This section provides links to a range of general resources related to screening for health and social care professionals.

Guidance: improving access to screening for people with SMI

Information for commissioners and screening providers to help improve access to screening for people with SMI, including those in high, medium and low secure mental healthcare settings.

Report: inequalities in cancer screening uptake for people with SMI

This report presents an analysis of differences in the uptake of bowel, breast and cervical cancer screening in England between people with and without SMI.

Guidance: improving access for people in secure and detained settings

This guidance primarily refers to screening for people in prisons but also applies to people in other NHS Health and Justice secure and detained settings such as immigration removal centres, secure children’s homes, secure training centres and young offender institutions.

Blog: addressing inequalities in LGBTQI+ cancer screening coverage

Public Health England (PHE) existed to protect and improve the nation’s health and wellbeing, and reduce health inequalities. It closed on 30 September 2021 with it’s responsibilities being passed to the UK Health Security Agency (HSA). This blog is no longer updated.

Cancer screening and people with learning disabilities

Guidance for health care professionals,  social care staff and family members to help someone with learning disabilities to be screened for cancer.

Guidance on reducing inequalities for people with a learning disability, autism or both

Health professionals can use this guidance to help people with a learning disability and/or autism better understand and access screening if they wish to do so.

Guidance on opting out of screening

Guidance for healthcare professionals to use with patients who want to opt out of screening.

Guidance: Duty of Candour (2020)

This publication provides advice to providers and commissioners of NHS screening programmes on best practice around duty of candour.

This section provides links to other useful resources around screening, such as: registering with a GP to ensure patients receive screening invitations; opting out of screening; and determining cancer risk.

To ensure that patients receive invitations to bowel cancer screening, they need to be registered with a GP. The following resources will provide guidance and support on this.

Find your local GP

An NHS service that helps to locate GPs based on a UK postcode search.

Registering with a GP: a guide for people experiencing homelessness (PDF)

Registering with a GP: a guide for Gypsy, Traveller, and Roma communities (PDF)

Registering with a GP: a guide for asylum seekers and refugees (PDF)

Family doctor service registration form (GMS1)

Population screening explained

A HM Government guide that sets out what population screening is, how it works, and its limitations.

Population screening timeline (PDF)

An NHS infographic showing when different types of screening are offered including bowel cancer screening.

Guidance on opting out of screening

A general guide on what a patient needs to do if they choose to opt out of screening, including bowel cancer screening.

Reducing inequalities and barriers in accessing NHS screening programmes

A series of short video clips of service users with learning disabilities talking about screening.

NHS population screening: information for trans and non-binary people

Information for trans (transgender) and non-binary people in England about the adult NHS screening programmes that are available in England and who is invited for screening.

Outpatients: cancer risk and screening for people who are transgender, non-binary and gender-diverse.

A booklet to help trans, non-binary, and gender-diverse community understand screening, cancer risk and how transition relates to these.

Population screening support for carers

Guidance to support carers and care providers to understand the NHS screening programmes.

Guidance on predictive genetic tests for cancer risk genes

A leaflet discussing predictive genetic testing which is used to look for inherited gene mutations that might put a person at higher risk of getting certain kinds of cancer.