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Breast, Colon Cancer Screening Rates High, But Not High Enough
Date:7/6/2010

pread of breast cancer and saves lives, so we want to see that continue to increase," he said.

Speaking at the press briefing, Dr. Marcus Plescia, director of CDC's Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, noted that there are several barriers that prevent some people from being screened for these cancers.

"There are a number of disparities," he said. "Disparities based on race and ethnicity, disparities based on lack of insurance, and disparities based across geographic regions."

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States, after lung cancer, and breast cancer is the most commonly found cancer and the second leading cause of cancer deaths among U.S. women, according to the CDC.

Other highlights from the reports include:

For colorectal cancer screening:

  • People with health insurance are more likely to be screened than the uninsured (66 percent to 36 percent, respectively).
  • Colorectal screening varied by state from 74 percent in Massachusetts to 53 percent in Oklahoma.
  • The highest rates of colorectal cancer screening were in the Northeast (74 percent in Maine, Delaware, and Massachusetts).
  • The lowest rates were in the Ccntral and western regions, (Oklahoma 53 percent, Arkansas 53 percent and Idaho 54 percent).
  • Screening rates were low among all racial and ethnic minorities except for blacks.
  • Other factors associated with low screening rates include low income (48 percent) and having less than a high school education (46 percent).

For breast cancer screening:

  • The lowest rates of breast cancer screening were among American Indian and Alaska Native women (70 percent).
  • Screening rates were lower among women with less than a high school education (73 percent), and low income women (69 percent).
  • Mammography rates were lowest in the western and southern states of Nevada (72 percent), Mississippi (72 percent), and
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