Conflict of interest The author has received funds or other research support at some stage in the last 10 years from Beckman Coulter (San Jose), Enterix Australia (Sydney) and Eiken Chemical (Tokyo).
Population-based screening for colorectal cancer: Australian research and implementation
Article first published online: 1 OCT 2009
© 2009 The Author. Journal compilation © 2009 Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology Foundation and Blackwell Publishing Asia Pty Ltd
Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Special Issue: Golden Jubilee Supplement: 50 Years of Gastroenterology in Australia, Gastroenterology Society of Australia
Volume 24, Issue Supplement s3, pages S33–S42, October 2009
How to Cite
Young, G. P. (2009), Population-based screening for colorectal cancer: Australian research and implementation. Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, 24: S33–S42. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1746.2009.06069.x
- Issue published online: 1 OCT 2009
- Article first published online: 1 OCT 2009
- colorectal cancer;
- early detection;
Australia is one of the first countries in the world to implement an organized whole-of-population screening program for colorectal cancer (CRC). Australians have made broad contributions to CRC in general ranging from primary prevention through genetics, secondary prevention and treatment, to palliation. This overview focuses on some of the contributions of direct relevance to population-based screening, stretching from technology development to population-based controlled studies and health services research. In terms of simple screening tests in a two-step screening strategy, the evidence is overwhelming that fecal immunochemical tests for hemoglobin (FITs) improve detection and are more acceptable. FIT-based screening is clearly acceptable to Australians and it has been demonstrated that a national organized screening program is feasible. In terms of benefit for Australians, with full roll out and high uptake by the population we could see the number of cases dying from CRC halved by this strategy. To this will be added the extra-screening benefits of improved diagnosis, improved treatment and improved public awareness, all benefits of other screening programs. CRC screening has progressed from a matter of irrelevance and distaste, to commonwealth government policy in the context of an organized program for all Australians.