Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in both men and women in the United States and is expected to cause about 52,550 deaths in 2023 . Although this disease is one of the most common diseases, it is also one of the most preventable ones. The United States Prevention Task Force (USPTF) recommends that all individuals aged 45 to 79 receive regular colorectal cancer screening .
Increasing access to convenient screening and care is an integral part of addressing this public health issue. Here are three benefits of providing your population with regular colorectal cancer screening:
1. Prevent colorectal cancer from developing
Many colorectal cancers can be prevented through regular screening. Screening can help identify precancerous polyps or abnormal growths in the colon. Fortunately, polyps are benign and won’t spread when found early so they can be removed before they turn into cancer. Screening is important because, when found early, colorectal cancer is highly treatable.
As the early stages of colorectal cancer usually present no symptoms, many people forgo crucial screenings. Additionally, many individuals mistakenly believe that their risk of developing colorectal cancer is low because they have no family history of it. However, about 75 percent of all new cases of colorectal cancer occur in individuals with no known risk factors for the disease . Regular asymptomatic screening is crucial since this disease affects all ages, gender, ethnicities, and lifestyles.
2. Identify colorectal cancer early when it is most treatable
The chance of early detection increases with colorectal cancer screening. Asymptomatic screening may allow for the detection of cancer at an earlier stage than symptom-detected cancer. Earlier detection can therefore enable the conditions necessary for a better prognosis.
Unfortunately, the majority of people come to the doctor when the disease has spread beyond the wall of the colon or rectum or to distant parts of the body. The American Cancer Society has reported that only 39% of people with colorectal cancer are diagnosed when the disease
is localized and has a 90% five-year survival rate .
Delayed identification can decrease the chances of being successfully cured of colon cancer. If colon cancer has spread to distant parts of the body, the 5-year survival rate is 14%, while the 5-year survival rate for rectal cancer that has spread to distant parts of the body is 17% . This is why increasing screening prevalence is vital.
3. Minimize healthcare costs
There are also strong economic benefits to regular colorectal cancer screening as the disease has the second highest treatment cost of any cancer. Colorectal cancer accounts for approximately 12.6% of all cancer treatment costs with medical service costs totaling $23.7 billion in 2020 . When screening is used, colorectal cancer can be prevented or diagnosed at the localized stage when expensive therapies, prescriptions, and care are not required. The high costs of these colorectal cancer therapies make a case for prevention and early detection stronger than ever.
How LetsGetChecked can help
LetsGetChecked’s at-home colon cancer screening solution makes it easy for organizations to support their population in preventing colorectal cancer, identifying the disease early, and minimizing healthcare costs. Our at-home Colon Cancer Screening (FIT) Test plays a vital role in the route to prevention and early diagnosis. This convenient, noninvasive stool analysis can encourage individuals to take the first important step in detecting colorectal cancer early, increasing screening rates and positively affecting population health.
Our flexible healthcare solutions make launching or expanding an at-home colorectal cancer screening program easy, enabling equitable and accessible care at scale. By leveraging a screening program with LetsGetChecked, your people can overcome screening barriers and easily stay up-to-date on recommended screenings from the comfort of home.