Have you got the guts to join The Bowel Movement this April with The Mercy Hospital Foundation?

Have you got the guts to join The Bowel Movement this April with The Mercy Hospital Foundation?

02 April 2014

April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, and to coincide with this, the Mercy Hospital Foundation has launched The Bowel Movement, an awareness campaign aimed at improving knowledge and understanding of bowel cancer and other gastric diseases.

Bowel cancer is the second most diagnosed cancer in Ireland for both men and women, and shockingly, people in Cork are more likely to develop the disease than in any other county in Ireland. Over 50% of people are diagnosed when the disease is at an advanced stage, leaving them with a poorer chance of survival; however, if detected early, it can be treated successfully in 90% of cases.

The Mercy University Hospital is the Regional Centre for Gastroenterology because of its specialist expertise in the early detection and treatment of early oesophageal, stomach and bowel cancers throughout the Munster region; and has also been identified as one of the 15 hospitals in Ireland accredited to carry out screening for colorectal (bowel) cancer, as part of the National Colorectal (Bowel) Cancer Screening Programme. Under the Bowel Cancer Screening Programme, men and women aged 60-69 will be offered a free home testing kit (a FIT test). It is expected that 95% of those people who do the test will have normal results with the remainder being referred to The Mercy Hospital for a colonoscopy.

Easter Monday, April 21st will see The Bowel Movement’s flagship event, The Mercy Moonwalk take place at Blackrock Castle at 12 noon. This 8km sponsored walk promises to be a fun family event with a difference, as all participants will don a pair of eye catching ‘Mercy Moon Shorts’. Registration is now open at www.mercyfundraising.ie and is €20 per adult and €5 per child, including your very own ‘Mercy Moon Shorts’.

Funds raised through The Mercy Moonwalk will go towards Bowel Cancer and Gastric services at The Mercy, including the provision of Patient Support Packs for newly diagnosed bowel cancer patients, as well as research into family risk of bowel cancer, and equipment for diagnosis and treatment.

Micheál Sheridan, CEO at the Mercy Hospital Foundation said “The word cancer fills many people with dread. For many, getting cancer is their number one fear, so when people hear they have cancer, they very often think the worst. We will use the funds raised through The Moonwalk to develop information packs for newly diagnosed colorectal (bowel) cancer patients.”

Micheál added “We have found that by providing similar information packs in recent years for men diagnosed with prostate cancer here at The Mercy, with clearly written information and easy to understand terminology, can help patients better understand their treatment options and the journey ahead of them. It can also help members of their family and close friends to better understand what is happening to their loved one at what is a difficult and worrying time.”

Dr. Martin Buckley, Consultant Gastroenterologist at the Mercy University Hospital said “Currently many patients have to travel to Dublin for endoscopic treatment as the necessary endoscopy equipment is not available in Cork. While we have the skills and experience to perform this endoscopic treatment at The Mercy, we need critical investment for equipment to provide a complete service to the Munster area, and this is where the support of donors to The Mercy Hospital Foundation can help.”

Micheál concluded “Our mission is to support the Hospital in delivering the highest quality of patient care by raising funds to support advancements and innovation in the treatment and care of patients at the Mercy Hospital, the People’s Hospital. We promise to do our very best to provide the people of Cork and Munster with a world class hospital, right on their doorstep, and this is only possible through the help of our supporters and donors like those who step out on April 21st and join The Mercy Moonwalk.”

You can register for The Mercy Moonwalk today or make a donation at www.mercyfundraising.ie. Or if you would like to organise your own Moonwalk or event as part of The Bowel Movement, please call Eimear on 021 4274076.