HK Gov offers screening services for cancer prevention

The Department of Health (DH) urged members of the public to help fight cancer by adopting a healthy lifestyle and initiating early detection of disease.

The said call was made as Hong Kong joins the global celebration of the World Cancer Day 2023.

Presently, the Hong Kong government adopts an evidence-based approach in regard to implementation of cancer screening, so as to achieve early diagnosis of cancer for initiating early treatment and thus improving treatment outcomes.

The Colorectal Cancer Screening Programme (CRCSP) subsidises asymptomatic Hong Kong residents aged between 50 and 75 to undergo screening tests for colorectal cancer.

The Cervical Screening Programme (CSP), meanwhile, encourages women aged 25 to 64 who have had sexual experience to have regular cervical screening as an effective way of preventing cervical cancer.

Moreover, the two-year Breast Cancer Screening Pilot Programme (BCSPP) has been rolled out to provide risk-based breast cancer screening services for eligible women in the three Women Health Centres and the 18 Elderly Health Centres of the DH since 2021.

The Cancer Expert Working Group on Cancer Prevention and Screening recommends women aged between 44 and 69 with certain combinations of personalised risk factors that put them at increased risk of breast cancer to consider mammography screening every two years.

Under the BCSPP, the DH uses a breast cancer risk assessment tool for local women ( to assess the risk of developing breast cancer.

For more information, the public may visit the websites of the CRCSP ( and the CSP ( Details of the BCSPP are available at the websites of Family Health Service ( and Elderly Health Service (

In a statement released last Feb. 4, a spokesman for the DH said that cancer is a major public health issue as in 2020 alone, more than 34 000 new cancer cases were diagnosed in Hong Kong, and the five most common cancers were lung, colorectal, breast, prostate and liver cancer.

In Hong Kong, cancer is also the leading cause of death. In view of population growth and aging, the number of new cancer cases and the related healthcare demands are expected to further increase. Prevention is better than cure. About 40 per cent of all cancers can be prevented by adopting a healthy lifestyle and reducing exposure to major risk factors.

“We urge the public to avoid tobacco smoking, refrain from alcohol drinking active, have a balanced diet and maintain a healthy body weight and waist circumference to reduce the risk of developing cancer,” the spokesman advised.

Health advice on prevention of various cancers is also available on the Cancer Online Resource Hub (

The office of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) in Hong Kong reported that 123 cases of overseasFilipino workers (OFWs) with cancer were repatriated for the year 2022.

Aside from primary prevention, the World Cancer Day has been designated on February 4 yearly by the Union for International Cancer Control since 2000.

This was done to increase community understanding of the challenges posed by cancer and to bring the world together in the fight against the disease.

With the theme “Close the Care Gap”, World Cancer Day 2023 is about recognising the progress in enabling more people to access relevant health care for the prevention and control of cancer.

To know more about World Cancer Day, please visit

On 22 December last year, the Department of Health said that about 240 colonoscopy specialists have also joined the CRCSP to provide colonoscopy examination services at about 680 service locations, and over 70 per cent of these locations will not charge any additional payment for the colonoscopy and polyp removal if necessary.

The spokesman called on eligible persons to join the CRCSP as soon as possible, and prevent colorectal cancer by leading a healthy lifestyle including exercising regularly, eating two servings of fruit and three servings of vegetables daily, maintaining a healthy body weight, and saying no to smoking and alcohol.

Eligible persons who are interested to join the CRCSP should enrol in the Electronic Health Record Sharing System (eHRSS). Please refer to the eHRSS website at or call the Registration Office at 3467 6300 for details.

​For more information on the CRCSP, please visit the DH’s thematic website or call the dedicated hotline (3565 6288) during office hours.