The Department of Health will launch the second phase of the Colorectal Cancer Screening Pilot Programme on February 27, inviting 250,000 Hong Kong residents born between 1949 and 1951 to join.
Launched in September last year, the three-year screening programme subsidises in phases asymptomatic residents born from 1946 to 1955 to undergo screening tests.
Those born in the years 1946 to 1948 were the first batch of participants.
As of yesterday, 597 primary care doctors and 134 colonoscopy specialists had enrolled in the scheme, with 12,900 eligible people joining the programme.
Centre for Health Protection Controller Dr Wong Ka-hing called on eligible people to enrol early to prevent colorectal cancer, including those in the first phase age group who can still participate.
More than 10,000 participants had been tested by December 29, and blood was found in the samples of more than 1,400 of them, which could indicate cancer.
About 800 participants then underwent a colonoscopy examination.
Centre for Health Protection Surveillance & Epidemiology Branch Head Dr Regina Ching said 70% of these test participants were diagnosed with benign tumours.
Polyps found during the examination were removed so they do not become cancerous.
However, 6% of those tested were diagnosed with colorectal cancer, believed to be in the early stage, and are now undergoing further tests and treatment.
"With early detection and prompt treatment, cure rates are comparatively higher," she said, reminding eligible people to enrol in the electronic Health Record Sharing System so they can join the screening programme.
The Government will provide a $280 subsidy for each consultation in relation to the Faecal Immunochemical Test.
The subsidy for the colonoscopy examination is $7,800 if no polyp is detected. The amount will be $8,500 if polyps are found and removed.
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