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The American Cancer Society (ACS) recently released a new colorectal cancer screening guideline, published in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. The new guideline recommends that adults at average risk for colorectal cancer start regular screening at age 45. The guideline was changed, based in part, on new data showing rates of colorectal cancer are increasing in younger populations.

As a result, the ACS updated the guideline to save more lives by finding colorectal cancer early, when treatment is more likely to be successful and by detecting and removing polyps, which contributes to the prevention of colorectal cancer. Details about the new guideline and additional resources can be found on cancer.org/coloncancer.

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the third leading cause of cancer death in both men and women in the United States as reported by the ACS. The four states served by the Great Plains Quality Innovation Network (QIN) – Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota – continue to have CRC incidence rates that are higher than the national average and CRC screening rates that are far below the national average according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data.

“Although Great Plains QIN recently completed contract work related to colorectal cancer screening, we continue to support the work of our stakeholders and partners to improve and sustain advances made in colorectal cancer screening. This updated recommendation is key in continuing to reduce the incidence and mortality rates from colorectal cancer in our four-state region.” stated Judy Beck, Quality Improvement Program Manager, Great Plains QIN.

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