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Increased Screening is Leading to Fewer Colon Cancer Deaths

With the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reporting that colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths for Americans, it’s rather alarming that an estimated 1/3 of American adults don’t get screened for colon cancer. As such, researchers and healthcare practitioners have been working to gain insight into the reasons why so many don’t get tested and develop strategies to encourage more people to get tested.   After determining that screening rates were lowest among minorities and those without insurance, strategic campaigns were developed to help influence more people to get screened. In addition, the rollout of the new healthcare system has enabled those who previously couldn’t afford to see a doctor or get screened to receive healthcare.   Recent studies have revealed that as the percentage of people getting colon cancer screenings has increased there has been a decrease in the percentage of colon cancer deaths. According to a report from the American Cancer Society, within the last decade the number of individuals getting colonoscopy screenings has tripled and seems to be in direct correlation with there being 30% less incidences of colon cancer in older adults. Another pilot study, conducted by the Kaiser Permanente ground and funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that mailing home screening tests to patients’ homes lead to a 40% increase in colon cancer screenings.   Even with improved healthcare coverage and marketing campaigns advocating the importance of colon cancer testing, it is estimated that an average of 23 million Americans are still not up to date on colon cancer screenings. Early detection can save lives, and at-home test kits make it very simple to get tested. These tests only take a couple of minutes to complete and they can be conducted in the comfort of your own home.   Sources:
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