The number of people who participated in the population screening programme for bowel cancer is higher than expected. Between 2014 – 2017 a total of 3.85 million people participated. Also, more bowel cancers and polyps have been identified than expected: colon cancer was found in approximately 4 people per 1,000 participants and large polyps were found in approximately 20 people.per 1,000 participants. The population screening is also very cost effective. These were the conclusions of the evaluation report conducted by the Erasmus University Medical Center and the NKI Netherlands Cancer Institute / Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital.
The evaluation report shows that the bowel cancer screening programme was successfully launched in 2014 and that the future looks very positive. It is anticipated that by 2030 the programme will have prevented almost 1 in 5 cases of bowel cancer and more than 1 in 3 deaths. Early detection of bowel cancer greatly increases the chance of a successful outcome and the treatment is often less invasive.
Many parties have worked hard to ensure the success of this population screening programme. The bowel cancer screening programme is coordinated by the RIVMNational Institute for Public Health and the Environment ((the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment). The evaluation of the Dutch bowel cancer screening programme was conducted by the Erasmus MC Erasmus University Medical Center and the NKI Netherlands Cancer Institute / Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital commissioned by RIVM.