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Expanding colorectal cancer screening among minority women†
Article first published online: 25 OCT 2010
Copyright © 2010 American Cancer Society
Volume 117, Issue 1, pages 70–76, 1 January 2011
How to Cite
Shike, M., Schattner, M., Genao, A., Grant, W., Burke, M., Zauber, A., Russo, L. and Cuyjet, V. (2011), Expanding colorectal cancer screening among minority women. Cancer, 117: 70–76. doi: 10.1002/cncr.25566
The authors wish to thank Carol Pearce, MFA, writer/editor with the MSKCC Department of Medicine, for editorial assistance.
- Issue published online: 16 DEC 2010
- Article first published online: 25 OCT 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 29 JUN 2010
- Manuscript Revised: 26 APR 2010
- Manuscript Received: 5 MAR 2010
- colorectal cancer screening;
- underserved population;
Colorectal cancer screening (CRCS) in the United States is inadequate in minority communities and particularly among those who lack insurance. Finding ways to increase screenings in these minorities presents a healthcare challenge. The authors sought to determine whether offering CRCS at the time of mammography is an effective way to increase CRCS among minority women.
This study was offered to women attending the Breast Examination Center of Harlem (BECH), a community outreach program of Memorial Sloan-Kettering serving the primarily black and Hispanic Harlem Community. Screening was explained, medical fitness was determined, and colonoscopies were performed. Barriers to screening and ways to overcome them were ascertained. Participants had to be at least 50 years of age without a history of colorectal cancer or screening within the last 10 years.
There were 2616 women eligible for CRCS, of these women 2005 (77%) refused to participate in the study, and 611 (23%) women were enrolled. There was a high interest in CRCS including among those who declined to participate in the study. The major barrier was lack of medical insurance, which was partially overcome by alternative funding. Of the 611 women enrolled, 337 (55%) went on to have screening colonoscopy. Forty-nine (15%) women had adenomatous polyps.
Offering CRCS to minority women at the time of mammography and without a physician's referral is an effective way to expand screening. Screening colonoscopy findings are similar to those in the general population. Alternatives to traditional medical insurance are needed for the uninsured. Cancer 2011. © 2010 American Cancer Society.