Informed choice and the right to appropriate PSA testing
Posted Dec 08 2010 12:00am
The “New” Prostate Cancer InfoLink and Prostate Cancer International have considerable sympathy with the views of Mr. Neate.
The British public and particularly the male component of the British public are not generally well informed about their health. One of the downsides of the British National Health Service is that people tend not to think about their long-term health needs because they just assume that the state-sponsored system will “be there when they need it.” Getting tested for risk of specific disorders is not exactly seen as a priority by the average British health-care consumer.
Thus, we agree with Mr. Neate that if the male population of the UK is being told that they have the right to a PSA test but it’s not going to be a mandated screening test, then they also need to be told what the test is, when they might want to consider having one, why, and what the associated risks of having the test are. In addition, the average British general practitioner needs to be much better informed about the potential utility of the PSA test.