It is known from the statistics department that the prostate cancer toll is 2500 men a year in Australia. Hence the labor politician Wayne Swan and the Cancer Council of Australia's chief executive, Professor Alan Coates are not in good terms due to the issue of prostate cancer test. Mr. Swan, a prostate cancer survivor said that Coates is showing his ignorance by not implementing the screening test for prostate cancer. Swan attacked Mr. Coates last night regarding on SBS's Insight program.
Both the men have been at odds on this issue. Mr. Swan said that Coates should be removed from his current position. Swan who is the federal MP from Queensland advocated that men over 40 with a family history of prostate cancer and all men over 50 years should undergo a blood test for prostate-specific antigen (PSA). This is a screening test which indicates a prostate problem, and can detect cancer. This is very useful as early detection is the best prevention. But Coates was against it because the PSA test's accuracy is not yet proved. Professor Coates is retiring from his position in May.
He will be succeeded by Professor Ian Olver. But Swan compares this decision to that of an early painful death among many whose cancer can go undetected at an early stage. Professor Coates has said that the Cancer Council's policy states that there is no evidence showing that a screening program would reduce deaths.