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Growing Shortage of Gastroenterologists to Affect Screening Capacity for #2 Cancer Killer
Date:1/7/2009

"GI Gap" To Worsen as the U.S. Population Ages; Projected Demand for Gastroenterologists is Growing at Nearly Double the Rate of Supply

Olympus Seeks Legislative Solution and Increased Awareness to Proactively Increase Number of Gastroenterology Fellowships

WASHINGTON, Jan. 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United States is facing a shortage of gastroenterologists (GIs) that will total at least 1,050 of these specialty physicians by 2020, according to a first of its kind study from Olympus and The Lewin Group, a national healthcare and human services consulting firm. The new research illustrates that the aging population and increased colorectal cancer (CRC) screening rates will overwhelm the supply of GI physicians, challenging the nation's ability to provide adequate screening and treatment for the nation's number two cancer killer.

The Lewin research was commissioned by Olympus, the global leader in endoscopy, as part of a campaign to raise awareness about colorectal cancer screening and ensure screening is available to all who seek it. The new data was unveiled today and is available at www.olympusamerica.com/crcadvocacy.

"This GI shortage is a major concern for the U.S. healthcare system and Olympus is dedicated to finding solutions that increase the number of gastroenterologists and make CRC screening widely accessible," said F. Mark Gumz, president and CEO of Olympus Corporation of the Americas. "With approximately 149,000 new cases of colorectal cancer projected to be diagnosed in 2008, and an estimated 50,000 Americans projected to die from this treatable and beatable disease each year, it is critical to ensure that the U.S. has a sufficient workforce of trained gastroenterologists." In 2008, the supply of GI physicians active in patient care was estimated to be 10,390.

Gumz continued, "While the
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SOURCE Olympus
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