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Screenings save lives


Colorectal cancer stands as one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths in the United States. However, the stark reality is that it doesn't have to be. The month of March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.
In 2021, our General Assembly took a significant step forward in the fight against colorectal cancer by passing Act 779. This legislation lowered the age range for covered colorectal cancer preventive screenings from 50 to 45 and above. Additionally, it mandates health insurance companies cover any follow-up examinations or lab tests related to colorectal cancer screening. This means that accessing these life-saving screenings is more accessible and affordable than ever before.
Colorectal cancer screening has consistently proven to save lives. Detecting this cancer early significantly increases the chances of successful treatment. Studies show that about nine out of every 10 people whose colorectal cancers are found early and treated appropriately are still alive five years later.
Here in Arkansas, colon cancer is the fourth most common form of cancer. Equally concerning, it ranks as the fourth deadliest form of cancer in our state. These statistics underscore the urgency of early detection and preventive measures.
The most effective way to reduce your risk of colorectal cancer is by undergoing regular colorectal cancer screening tests, starting at age 45. By taking proactive steps to prioritize your health and well-being, you not only safeguard yourself but also contribute to the overall health of our community.
Schedule a screening appointment with your healthcare provider, and encourage your loved ones to do the same. For more information, visit healthy.arkansas.gov.