The recent deaths of talented artists such as David Bowie and Alan Rickman have put male cancer in the spotlight.
Men are still more likely to get the disease and considerably more likely to die from it. But we still don't know why. The Forum has long campaigned around this issue, highlighting the need to invest in research in this area in its manifesto.
Now, thanks to Bowie (who died aged 69 of liver cancer), Rickman (aged 69 of pancreatic cancer) and Lemmy (aged 70 of prostate cancer), CEO Martin Tod is interviewed in the Daily Telegraph on the subject: Why aren't we doing more to stop men dying of cancer? In a thoughtful article, Peter Lloyd highlights the gap in male-female life expectancy (and points out that it hasn't always been like that), the disparity in commissioning of services for men and women and how men may have been the victims in NHS politics.
Martin scotches the myth that men aren't interested and present late with cancer symptoms. 'When it comes to presenting symptoms, especially around cancer,' he says, 'there's no evidence to suggest that men visit their GPs any less than women. The big gender difference is actually in preventative care; the stage before that. Women are invited into health centres far more frequently than men because of pregnancy and contraception issues, so there's already that open dialogue.'
Come on, let's really pay tribute to the starman and ensure the next David Bowie actually has some golden years.