JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Using a bar-code reader to access a database of participants in a large-scale bowel cancer screening programme. The card envelopes contain a guaiac-impregnated filter paper completed by the participants who have submitted small faecal samples, in pairs of specimens under each of the three flaps. Any occult (hidden) blood in the samples will react with the guaiac by turning blue when hydrogen peroxide solution is added. The National Health Service Bowel Cancer Screening Programme covers the whole of England and uses bar-codes to track the thousands of cards returned daily.
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