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Identifying Areas of High Colorectal Cancer Incidence and Mortality

Wyoming Cancer Surveillance Program

Colorectal cancer is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in Wyoming and the second leading cause of cancer death (behind lung cancer) in the state. In 2008, 222 new cases of colorectal cancer were diagnosed in Wyoming (122 men and 100 women), and 87 people died from colorectal cancer (49 men and 38 women).

The Wyoming Cancer Control Act of 2007 legislated the creation of the Wyoming Colorectal Cancer Screening Program (WCCSP). This program was designed to eliminate the cost barrier to screening by providing free colonoscopies to eligible Wyoming residents.

Program Eligibility

The following eligibility criteria were established for the WCCSP—

  • Age 50 years or older and not eligible for the federal Medicare program.
  • Younger than 50 years of age with doctor's recommendation for screening.
  • Minimum age 18 years.
  • Must be a Wyoming resident for at least one year.
  • Income at or below 250% of the federal poverty level.
  • Uninsured or underinsured for colorectal cancer screening.
  • No colonoscopy within the past 10 years.

January 1, 2008–December 31, 2010 (The First Three Years)

2,172 Wyoming residents applied for a free colonoscopy—

  • 1,643 (76%) were approved.
  • 24% had a family history of colorectal cancer.
  • 38% experienced symptoms prior to screening (rectal bleeding, abdominal pain, changes in bowel habits).

1,450 Wyoming residents were screened—

  • 42% had polyps removed.
  • 21% had adenomatous polyps.
  • 35 cancers were detected.
  • 65% of those screened returned a satisfaction survey with a 98% approval rating.
 
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