Fine Gael TD Neale Richmond is working with the Marie Keating Foundation to raise awareness of prostate cancer and to break the stigma that men can experience when speaking about their health.
Deputy Richmond said: “Last year I was delighted to take part in the Marie Keating Foundation’s ‘Stand up for your Prostate’ campaign which was aimed at empowering men to feel comfortable discussing their health with friends and relatives and to get checked regularly.
“Prostate cancer is the most common male cancer in Ireland, with over 3,350 men diagnosed with the illness every year.
“Unfortunately, like many, my family has been touched by this terrible disease. This year I am delighted to lend my support to Marie Keating’s Blue September campaign to continue to raise awareness on this important issue.
“Men often do not talk openly about our health; in fact, three-quarters of men claim they have never had a conversation with a close male relative or friend about their prostate health. Given that you are 2.5 times more likely to develop prostate cancer if a close relative has had it, this is concerning.
“Many men with prostate cancer show no symptoms at all and so it is crucial that those over 50 talk to their doctor about prostate cancer. If detected early, over 90% of men will survive.
“I would encourage men to use this opportunity to discuss their health with friends and family, and work towards these conversations becoming second nature. Awareness is key.
“If we take the lead to talk about our health with our brothers, fathers, children and friends, together we can bring about change, one conversation at a time.
“Today I will be writing to all my colleagues in the Oireachtas to have that conversation, as well as sending each of them a Marie Keating Foundation ‘Stand up for your Prostate’ pin,” Deputy Richmond concluded.