Topic: Health

Blue September 2015 takes on new approach to prostate cancer

Blue September 2015 is taking on a fresh approach to making men aware of prostate cancer.

Fronting this year's campaign is well-known New Zealand actor Hark Hadlow. He will be a part of new TV and radio commercials and is also the face of Blue September on posters, back-of-the-bus advertisements and other print media.

This year's take on men's prostate awareness month is confronting. It focuses on directly addressing the inhibitions men have to having a physical examination required to check for prostate abnormalities.

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in New Zealand men and the third most common cause of cancer death in men after lung cancer and bowel cancer:

- 1 in 10 will develop prostate cancer in their lifetime;

- 3000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year in New Zealand

- Last year approximately 600 Kiwi men died from prostate cancer – that’s roughly the same number as women who died from breast cancer;

- Māori men are 72 per cent more likely to die of prostate cancer once they are diagnosed than non-Māori men.

The Prostate Cancer Foundation of New Zealand continues to encourage all men over the age of 40 to have regular check ups if there is a family history of prostate cancer.

If you are between 50-70 then considering an annual prostate check that includes both a PSA blood test and digital rectal examination is important.

Several regions will show their support of Blue September by turning their landmark buildings around the country into blue.

They include:

The Auckland Sky Tower, The Cloud, the Auckland Town Hall and the Aotea Centre;

 •          In Whangarei, Te Matau a Pohe, Kotuitui Whitinga and the Canopy Bridges;

•           In Hamilton, Victoria Bridge and the Municipal building;

•           In Rotorua, the Clock Tower, Museum and Princess Gate (8 buildings);

•           In New Plymouth, Tom Parker Fountain;

•           In Palmerston North, the Clock Tower;

•           In Wellington, The Michael Fowler Centre;.  

•           Christchurch Airport;

•           The Oamaru Opera House;

•           The Settlers Museum Toitu, Dunedin.

Te Kāea reporter, Wepiha Te Kanawa covered a story on 'Distinguished Gentleman's Ride' an international prostate cancer fundraising event with 240 rides across 56 countries aiming to raise money for research into prostate cancer helping to find a cure.