Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Colorectal cancer screening rates on rise among Medicare beneficiaries due to expansion of coverage

Date:
May 3, 2011
Source:
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston
Summary:
Colorectal cancer screening rates increased for Medicare beneficiaries when coverage was expanded to average-risk individuals, but racial disparities still exist, according to researchers.

Colorectal cancer screening rates increased for Medicare beneficiaries when coverage was expanded to average-risk individuals, but racial disparities still exist, according to researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

"Despite the expansion of Medicare coverage for colorectal cancer screening, disparities persisted among the ethnic groups we examined," said Arica White, Ph.D., M.P.H., former doctoral student at The University of Texas School of Public Health, part of UTHealth.In 1998,Medicare began covering fecal occult blood test (FOBT) annually and sigmoidoscopy coverage every 4 years for average-risk beneficiaries and in July 2001 coverage was expanded to include colonoscopy for average-risk beneficiaries every 10 years.

The research is published in the May issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention.

"Screening rates are significantly lower among racial/ethnic minorities and this study tells us expansion in screening coverage does not necessarily lead to reduction or elimination of disparities among ethnic populations," said White. Researchers found Hispanics were less likely to receive screening after colonoscopy coverage was expanded, and blacks were less likely than whites to get screened during the periods prior to FOBT coverage, during FOBT coverage-only and after colonoscopy coverage, according to the study. White believes this is the first study to use Medicare claims data to examine the impact of the change in Medicare policy on disparities in guideline-specific colorectal cancer screening from prior to FOBT coverage to after colonoscopy coverage.

Differences in screening rates may be attributed to differences in socioeconomic status, health beliefs and health education as well as healthcare access. "These differences should not exist within a population that is universally insured," said White. "We need to identify and address the barriers which are causing these disparities in screening rates among the Medicare population."

In 2005, only 50 percent of U.S. adults age 50 years or older reported having a fecal occult blood test within the past year and/or an endoscopy within the past 10 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Health Interview Survey. "Many people age 65 years and older who are at risk of developing the disease are not getting screened even though they have access to screening services through Medicare," said White.

Colorectal cancer is the third most frequently diagnosed non-skin cancer in men and women in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society (ACS). The risk of developing colorectal cancer is slightly higher in men than in women and it is estimated that more than 50,000 Americans will die from the disease this year. Regular colorectal cancer screening or testing is recommended by the ACS as the most important way to prevent the disease. However, despite these national recommendations, prevention and early detection, screening rates remain low.

"There needs to be more emphasis on evidence-based strategies to continue to increase colorectal cancer screening rates among all Medicare beneficiaries," said White. She believes if there continues to be an increase in screening rates it is possible to attain the Healthy People 2020 goals and objectives of increasing colorectal cancer screening and eliminating racial disparities for some racial/ethnic groups.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. "Colorectal cancer screening rates on rise among Medicare beneficiaries due to expansion of coverage." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110503133207.htm>.
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. (2011, May 3). Colorectal cancer screening rates on rise among Medicare beneficiaries due to expansion of coverage. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110503133207.htm
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. "Colorectal cancer screening rates on rise among Medicare beneficiaries due to expansion of coverage." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110503133207.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Newsy (July 23, 2014) An 8-year-old boy helped his younger brother, who has a rare genetic condition that's confined him to a wheelchair, finish a triathlon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The Wawona Packing Company has issued a voluntary recall on the stone fruit it distributes due to a possible Listeria outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The 83 new genetic markers could open dozens of new avenues for schizophrenia treatment research. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Head Concerned About a Post-Antibiotic Era

CDC Head Concerned About a Post-Antibiotic Era

AP (July 22, 2014) Sounding alarms about the growing threat of antibiotic resistance, CDC Director Tom Frieden warned Tuesday if the global community does not confront the problem soon, the world will be living in a devastating post-antibiotic era. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins