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Fartbomb Aims to Assist Kiwis in Fight against Bowel Cancer

Fartbomb Aims to Assist Kiwis in Fight against Bowel Cancer

Auckland, 19 June 2014 - If you hear an increase in the amount of flatulence around your home or office from today onwards, you can thank ‘Fartbomb’ - a unique tool developed by Beat Bowel Cancer Aotearoa (BBCA).

Fartbomb is an online tool that has been developed to get Kiwis talking about our country’s deadliest cancer – bowel cancer – this Bowel Cancer Awareness Month™.

The website allows Kiwis to upload their own videos or other YouTube video content and drop strategically placed farts throughout then share via social networking sites. While the site is light-hearted, it is underpinned by an important message – the fact that while our bums are full of surprises, the biggest surprise of all is bowel cancer.

Each year, over 1200 Kiwis die from bowel cancer and BBCA CEO Megan Smith says that figure could be drastically improved with better awareness and the urgent roll out of national bowel cancer screening.

“Earlier this year, we released a report on government progress in bowel cancer supported by data obtained under the OIA that highlighted the dire state of play in New Zealand for those diagnosed with bowel cancer. The data showed that bowel cancer patients are being treated as second-class tumour citizens as a result of funding deficits for DHBs and the absence of a national screening programme.

“In addition to regional statistics indicating disparities, we also know that Kiwis don’t really know their bums in terms of the signs and symptoms of a cancer that kills as many each year as breast and prostate cancer combined. Research shows that less than half of us know what to look for when it comes to bowel cancer. Combining all of this and you get a nation of people who are dying unnecessarily from a cancer that, if caught early, has a 75% survival rate.”

Smith says that Fartbomb was designed as something that would get people talking and learning about bowel cancer and what to keep an eye out for. She believes that as a nation we’re aware of the symptoms of many other cancers but not bowel cancer – probably because bums are typically a bit taboo or uncomfortable to talk about with our friends and family.

“We don’t talk about our bums and we’re dying as a result. It is our hope that people will use Fartbomb and share their unique videos with family and friends because bowel cancer is New Zealand’s cancer. By talking more and sharing knowledge we hope that something as simple as Fartbomb can ultimately help to save lives.”

Fartbomb can be found here.



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