80% by 2018 falls short, but CRC screening rates up drastically

A paper published in the December 2018 American Journal of Gastroenterology analyzed the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable's "80% by 2018" campaign and how it's impacted colorectal cancer screening.

NCCRT's campaign aimed to screen 80 percent of all eligible adults by 2018. Although nationwide, the goal is anticipated to fall short, several healthcare organizations throughout the U.S. met the goal, and more than 66 percent of the more than 1,700 participating organizations raised their CRC screening rates.

Several encouraging statistics show the impact the campaign had. National data sets from the CDC show federally qualified health centers raised their screening rates 12.2 percent from 2012's rate of 30 percent, which represents 467,541 more patients getting screened.

Data from the CDC’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey documented an additional 3.3 million people getting screened between 2014 and 2016 and data from the National Health Interview Survey had 3,785,600 adults over 50 getting screened in 2015 alone.

If the NHIS screening rates, "holds at this level, an additional 37,200 lives will be saved through 2030," according to the journal article.

The Medicare population is also close to hitting the 80 percent screening rate. BRFSS data from 2016 had 78.4 percent of people aged 65 to 75 getting screened.

Researchers applauded the campaign. They said, "The framework can serve as a model for future public health campaigns. ... As 2018 winds down, the many partners who have dedicated the last four years to increasing CRC screening rates have earned the chance to celebrate their hard work and most importantly, the many lives they have saved."

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