Colorectal cancer has become the second leading cause of deaths related to cancer in U.S. among cancers affecting women and men. People past fifty years of age should be screened for cancer regularly using the stipulated methods. The article estimates the rate of use of different tests of colorectal cancer and also evaluates changes in use of test by comparing data from 2002, 2003, and 2006 surveys on Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance system (BRFSS). It was found that the respondents’ proportion aged fifty and above who reported the use of fecal occult blood testing (FOBT) and sigmoidoscopy had generally increased from 2002 to 2006; nonetheless, some populations like ethnic/racial minorities and those who lacked insurance cover reported low rates of testing. The proportion was greater for whites in comparison to the other races. Additionally, positive response percentages also increased with the increase in household income and level of education. The paper suggests that specific measures for increasing colorectal cancer screening and addressing the discrepancies in screening are required.
The chosen topic is very crucial considering the number of casualties been experienced annually as a result of this ailment. There is need to understand the rate at which people are being tested and the factors which affect the testing. With this knowledge it would be possible to deal with concerns like the disparities in the testing. Areas which require more attention would be known and measures put in place to deal with the concerns as necessary. The measures put in place would help in alleviating the problems hence the ailment would be controlled to certain levels.
In this article various groups have been mentioned as requiring the greatest preventive measures. The first group is the ethnic/racial minority who showed low rate of testing over the years. Considering that whites showed more rates of been tested it necessitates that the minority groups be evaluated to determine the reasons they are not been tested. Another group that requires more attention is the less educated as it was showed that testing increased with increase in the level of education. Additionally, low income earners were not been tested frequently. This could be attributed to the fact that they lacked sufficient finances to fund the process. It should also be noted that less income earners have lower chances of been insured; therefore, this group needs a keen attention.
There was evident disparity in the colorectal cancer test. The possible causes of health disparity related to the colorectal cancer test are lack of awareness about the need for screening, lack of the required source of healthcare, lack of health insurance, and lack of recommendation for screening from the physician.
Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2008). Use of Colorectal Cancer Test United States, 2002, 2004 and 2006, MMWR; 57(10). P. 453-458