Exact Sciences Awards Grants to 23 Organizations Focused on Increasing Colorectal Cancer Screenings

MADISON, Wis., December 7, 2023 — Exact Sciences, a leading provider of cancer screening and diagnostic tests, announced today that it awarded $1.3 million to 23 organizations through its Funding Opportunities for CRC Screening Uptake Strategies (FOCUS) Program. Grant recipients are committed to improving colorectal cancer (CRC) screening rates and making healthcare more accessible, with a focus on medically underserved populations.

CRC remains the second-leading cause of cancer death in the United States.1 The disease is more treatable if caught in early stages,1 yet an estimated 60 million average-risk adults remain unscreened in the United States.2,3*

The most marginalized patient populations often go unscreened for CRC, which is one reason the disease disproportionately affects certain socioeconomic groups, races, and regions in the United States.3 Half of premature CRC deaths are related to racial, ethnic, socioeconomic and geographic inequalities.4

"Exact Sciences is honored to support organizations that are working to expand access and availability of screening options for often-overlooked communities,” said Paul Limburg, Chief Medical Officer, Screening, at Exact Sciences. “Although colorectal cancer is one of the most preventable cancers,5 more than 50,000 people die from this disease each year in the U.S. alone.3 We want to change that.”

Exact Sciences' FOCUS Program provides grant funding to community organizations, health foundations, public health organizations, and advocacy groups working to increase access to CRC screening. Exact Sciences announced an additional group of 2023 grantees earlier in the year. Since its launch in 2022, the FOCUS Program has awarded more than $2.9 million to 50 organizations throughout the United States.

Exact Sciences developed Cologuard®, the first and only FDA-approved, noninvasive, multi-target, stool-based DNA screening test that people can use at home. Since making the test available in 2014, Exact Sciences has delivered more than 13 million Cologuard results to patients.


Axis Community Health
Pleasanton, Calif.
The organization plans to improve CRC screening rates and follow-up colonoscopy compliance within its patient community through comprehensive education on screening options and United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) guidelines, targeted outreach to uninsured patients who have never been screened, and automated reminders for both patients and providers.

Chiricahua Community Health Centers, Inc.
Douglas, Ariz.
Chiricahua will integrate patient navigation services led by community health workers to improve CRC screening rates in its diverse, rural patient populations.

Christian Community Health Services DBA Crossroad Health Center
Cincinnati, Ohio
The center will promote shared decision making in CRC screening, support marginalized populations who have never been screened, and improve compliance for screening in average-risk adults ages 45-49.

Community Health Center Network
San Leandro, Calif.
The network plans to streamline patient care and improve CRC screening rates for specific populations by conducting outreach and sharing screening education in patients’ preferred language.

Five Rivers Samaritan Health Center
Dayton, Ohio
The center will focus on increasing the screening rate of the unhoused, uninsured patient population. It will provide access to private restrooms for sample collection, access to mail for sample delivery, lodging before colonoscopy appointments, and transportation to colonoscopies. These services will be provided at no cost to patients.

Fort Drum Regional Health Planning Organization
Watertown, N.Y.
The organization will work to increase screening rates in marginalized older-adult, low-income, and disabled populations in New York’s rural Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence counties.

Generations Family Health Center, Inc.
Willimantic, Conn.
The federally qualified health center (FQHC) will improve professional and patient education on the importance of screening to increase screening rates for patients ages 45-49 and uninsured patients requiring individualized assistance.

Harbor Community Clinic dba Harbor Community Health Centers
San Pedro, Calif.
Using grant funding, the community health center aims to increase screening rates from 34% to 60% for patients ages 45-49.

Illinois Public Health Association
Springfield, Ill.
The association will engage community health workers to implement a patient navigation program and increase community outreach, with a specific emphasis on residents of color and immigrant, migrant, and refugee populations.

Jane Pauley Community Health Center
Indianapolis, Ind.
By improving patient adherence and promoting informed decision making, the center intends to increase screenings in marginalized populations.

Kaleida Health Foundation
Buffalo, N.Y.
By increasing patient education and building adherence programs, the foundation aims to address social determinants of health barriers to increase screening rates and improve colonoscopy completion rates after a positive stool test. The foundation will focus on adults ages 45-49 in the African American, Hispanic, and immigrant communities in Buffalo.

Kansas City CARE Clinic dba KC CARE Health Center
Kansas City, Mo.
Most patients of this FQHC are uninsured, underinsured, or living on low incomes in urban Kansas City, and they have not historically had access to routine preventive care. As a result of process improvements and a targeted CRC campaign in spring 2023, screening rates improved 21%. Using this funding, the center will work to increase screening rates by an additional 5% in 18 months.

Lone Star Circle of Care
Georgetown, Texas
The FQHC will utilize patient navigation services to increase screening rates for adults ages 45-49, the patients with the lowest rate of CRC screening, and further overcome barriers to care for underserved patients by increasing access to screening options.

Marshall Medical Center
Placerville, Calif.
As the only hospital facility within approximately 25 miles for many people in the area, the center has served more than 175,000 rural and semi-rural residents. It will work to improve screening rates, particularly in these rural areas, for marginalized populations and adults ages 45-49.

Mississippi State Department of Health
Ridgeland, Miss.
The department will convene community partners and stakeholders to make screening options available to medically underserved African Americans in the rural delta of Mississippi.

Optimus Health Care
Bridgeport, Conn.
In 2022, fewer than half of Optimus' patients were screened for CRC. To lessen the preventive healthcare disparities in its community, the organization will use this funding to improve screening rates in patients who belong to racial and ethnic minority groups and those who are uninsured and underinsured.

Ozarks Community Health Center
Hermitage, Mo.
The center will use community health workers to improve education and increase patient outreach, in order to begin closing the screening gap in its communities.

Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative
Sauk City, Wis.
This cooperative will use funding to address a crucial CRC screening disparity in rural Wisconsin. The screening rate in rural Wisconsin is approximately 60%, compared to an overall Wisconsin screening rate of 80%.

Southwest Community Health Center, Inc.

Bridgeport, Conn.
Southwest intends to increase screening rates in its approximately 26,000 clients, of whom more than 95% live under 200% of the Federal Poverty Level, 87% are racially or ethnically diverse, and 25% are better served in a language other than English.

Talbot County Health Department
Easton, Md.
The department will create a systemic process for advancing screening awareness and education, with a focus on marginalized patient populations.

The Centers
Cleveland, Ohio
This FQHC will increase patient navigation services, deepen partnerships with hospitals to facilitate free or accessible screening, increase awareness of screening options, and provide transportation to encourage residents to be screened for CRC.

Tri-County Community Health Council, Inc. dba CommWell Health
Four Oaks, N.C.
CommWell Health will launch Project FIERCE (Facilitating the Improvement of Equitable Rates of Colorectal Exams) to implement evidence-based interventions to organize CRC screenings for patients.

Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality
Madison, Wis.
The collaborative aims to increase participation from health systems across Wisconsin to improve CRC screening through a continued focus on shared decision making, education, and data analysis.

About the FOCUS Program
Launched in June 2022, Exact Sciences’ Funding Opportunities for CRC Screening Uptake Strategies (FOCUS) Program provides grant funding to community organizations, health foundations, public health organizations, and CRC advocacy groups to expand access to colorectal cancer screening and create affordable pathways to follow-up diagnostic care. FOCUS reflects Exact Sciences’ ongoing commitment to meet people where they are and offer solutions to overcome barriers to care, regardless of a patient’s race, ethnicity, gender identity, socioeconomic status, or geographic location. Submissions are reviewed via Exact Sciences’ corporate grants process, which is fully independent from sales and marketing activities. Funding decisions are based solely on the strength of the application and alignment with FOCUS Program objectives, without regard to any actual or potential commercial relationships with potential grantees. Learn more about the FOCUS Program.

About Exact Sciences Corp.
A leading provider of cancer screening and diagnostic tests, Exact Sciences gives patients and healthcare professionals the clarity needed to take life-changing action earlier. Building on the success of the Cologuard® and Oncotype® tests, Exact Sciences is investing in its pipeline to develop innovative solutions for use before, during, and after a cancer diagnosis. For more information, visit ExactSciences.com, follow Exact Sciences on X (formerly known as Twitter) @ExactSciences, or find Exact Sciences on LinkedIn and Facebook.

NOTE: Exact Sciences and Cologuard are trademarks or registered trademarks of Exact Sciences Corporation. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.

Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains forward-looking statements concerning our expectations, anticipations, intentions, beliefs or strategies regarding the future. These forward-looking statements are based on assumptions that we have made as of the date hereof and are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, conditions and events to differ materially from those anticipated. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties that may affect our forward-looking statements are described in the Risk Factors sections of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and any subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and in our other reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise.

* Based on 2022 USA single year census estimates for ages 45-85 inclusive and the percentage of unscreened subjects. Does not account for variable screening rates across age ranges.

1.     Siegel RL Miller KD, Wagle NS, Jemal A. Cancer statistics, 2023. CA Cancer J Clin. 2023;73(1):17-48.
2.     United States Census Bureau. Annual Estimates of the Resident Population by Single Year of Age and Sex for the United States: April 1, 2020 to July 1, 2022 (NC-EST2022-AGESEX-RES). Accessed 10May2023. https://www.census.gov/data/tables/time-series/demo/popest/2020s-national-detail.html   
3.     American Cancer Society. Colorectal Cancer Facts & Figures 2023-2025. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2023.
4.     Jemal A, Siegel RL, Ma J, et al. Inequalities in premature death from colorectal cancer by state. J Clin Oncol. 2015;33(8):829-835
5.     Itzkowitz SH. Incremental advances in excremental cancer detection tests. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2009;101(18):1225-1227. doi:10.1093/jnci/djp273


Media Contact:
Steph Spanos
+1 608-556-4380                                             

Investor Contact:

Erik Holznecht



Topics: Press Releases

Subscribe To The Blog