NACHC Board Chair, Dr. Gary Wiltz, joined other members of the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable (NCCRT)—an organization founded by the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention—to launch the 80 percent by 2018 Colorectal Cancer Screening Initiative. The NCCRT initiative focuses on eliminating colorectal cancer as a major public health problem and increasing the number of adults 50 and older who get screened for colon cancer regularly to 80 percent by the year 2018.
According to an ACS fact sheet, colon cancer incidence rates have dropped 30 percent in the U.S. in the last 10 years among adults 50 and older. During this same period colorectal cancer screenings have increased from 56 percent to 65 percent in 2010, indicating that the screening is making a difference. Now that more people have access to preventative services like colorectal screenings due to the Affordable Care Act, the NCCRT hopes to raise awareness and continue to increase the rate of preventative screenings.
Dr. Wiltz emphasized Community Health Centers’ commitment to providing quality primary and preventative care, saying “We stand ready to do our part in the prevention of colorectal cancer by providing outreach and affordable screenings in America’s most vulnerable and medically underserved communities.”
NACHC is joins more than 50 other organizations that have already pledged embrace the shared goal of increasing national colorectal cancer screening rates to 80 percent by 2018.