PhillyVoice covered the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association’s The Health of America Report on colorectal cancer rates in the article, “Colorectal cancer risk factors increasing among millennials.” Chronic conditions such as obesity, diabetes, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis can increase the risk of colorectal cancer from 1.3 to 2 times. These conditions have been on the rise in commercially insured adults ages 22-37.
One point of concern is the lack of screening by those at risk. Around 60 percent of people 50 and older and almost half of people who have Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis aren’t getting screened, likely due to lack of awareness and anxiety about the screening process.
“It is concerning that many Americans are not getting screened for colorectal cancer,” said Dr. Richard Snyder, chief medical officer and executive vice president of Facilitated Health Networks at Independence Blue Cross. “Regular screenings can identify polyps before they become cancerous and colorectal cancers at an earlier stage, thereby improving treatment outcomes.”