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    Barriers, including those at the patient, provider, and the healthcare system level, result in low colorectal cancer (CRC) screening rates.1,2 Research suggests that helping patients learn to prioritize their health can lead to improved outcomes.3,4 Learn more about barriers to CRC screening and prioritizing preventive care.

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  • Image of pen putting checkmarks in circles

    CRC screening rates in the US are below the nationwide goals,5 regardless of state, age, or ethnicity.6 Early detection of CRC significantly decreases mortality and improves outcomes.8,13  Learn more about current screening rates and the value of timely screening.

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  • Image of a book of guidelines

    Most national guidelines recommend patients be screened for CRC starting at age 45 years.7-10 Patients over the age of 75 years should discuss the risks and benefits of screening with their healthcare provider.7-10  Learn more about the various government and professional organizations that have developed CRC screening guidelines, as well as the recommended screening ages and intervals for CRC screening modalities.

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  • Image of converging arrows

    There are many effective ways to screen for CRC, each with risks and benefits to be considered when determining an appropriate approach.8,11 Learn more about the efficacy and considerations for each of the available screening modalities.

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  • Image of viral particles

    Like many preventive procedures, colorectal cancer screening rates were significantly reduced by the COVID-19 pandemic. Between January 2020 and July 2020, there was an estimated deficit of 3.8 million colorectal cancer screenings in the United States.12  Learn more about how COVID-19 has affected CRC screening and projected effect on future CRC outcomes.

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Muthukrishnan M, Arnold LD, James AS. Patients' self-reported barriers to colon cancer screening in federally qualified health center settings. Prev Med Rep. 2019;15:100896.

Wang H, Gregg A Qiu F, et al. Provider perceived colorectal cancer screening barriers: Results from a survey of accountable care organizations. JOJ Public Health. 2017;1(2):555557.

National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable. 2019 colorectal cancer screening messaging guidebook. Accessed February 26, 2023. https://nccrt.org/resource/2019messagingguidebook

Hing E, Albert M. State variation in preventive care visits, by patient characteristics, 2012. NCHS data brief, no 234. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2016.

National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable. 80% in every community. Accessed February 26, 2023. http://nccrt.org/

6American Cancer Society. Colorectal cancer facts & figures 2020-2022. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2020.

Patel SG, May FP, Anderson JC, et al. Updates on age to start and stop colorectal cancer screening: recommendations from the US Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer. Gastroenterol. 2022;162(1):285-299.

Davidson KW, Barry MJ, Mangione CM, et al. Screening for colorectal cancer: US Preventive Services Task Force recommendation statement. JAMA. 2021;325(19):1965-1977. 

Wolf AMD, Fontham ETG, Church TR, et al. Colorectal cancer screening for average-risk adults: 2018 guideline update from the American Cancer Society. CA Cancer J Clin. 2018;68(4):250-281.

10 Shaukat AK, Kahi CJ, Burke CA, et al. ACG clinical guidelines: colorectal cancer screening 2021. Am J Gastroenterol. 2021;116(3):458-479.

11 American Cancer Society. Colorectal cancer screening tests. Accessed February 26, 2023. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/colon-rectal-cancer/detection-diagnosis-staging/screening-tests-used.html

12 Chen RC, Haynes K, Du S, et al. Association of cancer screening deficit in the United States with the COVID-19 pandemic. JAMA Oncol. Published online April 29, 2021. jamaoncol.2021.0884.

13 Siegel RL, Miller KD, Goding Sauer A, et al. Colorectal cancer statistics, 2020. CA Cancer J Clin. 2020;70(3):145-164.



Last Updated: 3/13/2023