Ovarian Cancer

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 11th June 2018.

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Photo of Lee Rowley Lee Rowley Conservative, North East Derbyshire

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of running an awareness campaign on the symptoms of ovarian cancer.

Photo of Steve Brine Steve Brine The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

Public Health England ran a regional pilot ovarian campaign in the North West of England from 10 February to 16 March 2014. The campaign’s key message was ‘Feeling bloated, most days, for three weeks or more could be a sign of ovarian cancer. Tell your doctor’.

The public awareness survey results, general practice attendance data and referrals data suggest that the regional campaign did have an effect on the target audience’s understanding of the key symptom of ‘bloating’. However, the results showed no impact on diagnoses and there has not been any further roll out of the campaign.

Results for the number of cancers diagnosed, the stage at cancer diagnosis and survival have shown no evidence of an impact, although it has been difficult to evaluate due to small numbers, the availability of the data sets and a time lag in terms of the effect.

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