top of page

The simple screening test that can save lives

[supplied by 33 Creative]


Dr Joel Wenitong. Image: supplied

A new campaign featuring Gabbi Gabbi man Dr Joel Wenitong is encouraging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to stay healthy and strong by doing a bowel cancer screening test every two years.

The campaign aims to raise awareness of the importance of bowel screening and increase participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program. The Australian Government program provides people aged 50-74 years with a free bowel cancer screening test every two years.

Bowel cancer is Australia’s second biggest cancer killer and one of the most common cancers impacting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare data (2018-2019) indicates that just over a quarter of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (27.3%) participated in the National Bowel Cancer Screening Program while a 2019 survey by Cancer Council found nearly half of eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people surveyed weren’t up to date with any kind of bowel cancer screening.

Dr Wenitong says early detection, through screening, can help save lives and reduce bowel cancer rates in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

“Every year, around 15,000 new cases of bowel cancer are diagnosed in Australia, and 90% of those could be successfully treated if caught early,” said Dr Wenitong.  

The at-home test kit is sent to people at their Medicare registered home address once they turn 50. People who have not received a kit or need a replacement kit are urged to contact the National Cancer Screening Register by visiting or call on 1800 627 701. Health professionals can also order a kit on their patients’ behalf through the register.

Targeted campaign resources have been developed to support health professionals and community members in completing the test. Television and radio advertisements will run through First Nations media outlets, followed by a hard copy mail out of promotional stakeholder materials and events encouraging community members to have a yarn with their health professional if they have any questions.

Dr Joel has a simple message for mob. “If you’re feeling hesitant about completing the at-home bowel cancer screening test – don’t. It’s simple, easy and free, and helps you to stay healthy and strong.”

To find out more about the benefits of bowel cancer screening or to download campaign and stakeholder resources visit


Wombeetch Puyuun, a unique friendship and the push to recognise a monument erected in his

[Matt Neal, ABC]

Indigenous man Wombeetch Puyuun, known to the local white settlers as Camperdown George, stood in a courtroom in south-west Victoria in 1877.

Indigenous fashion designers set sights on overseas markets

[Abby Richards and Hinako Shiraishi, ABC]

When Nat Dann started her brand Ihraa last year, her goal was to showcase her designs as part of New York Fashion Week. Exactly two months from now, the Bardi, Nyul Nyul and Nyikina woman's dream will come true as her swimwear will hit the runway on New York's Varick Street building rooftop.

Hearing to examine operation of the NDIS for First Nations people in remote communities

[supplied by Jacqueline Levett]

In a five day hearing commencing on Monday 11 July, the Disability Royal Commission will examine the operation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in remote and very remote communities.

bottom of page