The National Coalition for Quality Colorectal Cancer Screening and Care, a 501(c)(6) not-for-profit association, recently announced the formation of a broad-based coalition dedicated to reducing the incidence of colorectal cancer through educational programs aimed at promoting colonoscopy screening and care options for patients in a safe and comfortable setting.
The Coalition, comprised of gastroenterologists, surgeons, primary care physicians, oncologists, anesthesiologists, patient advocacy groups, and concerned individuals, will support a sustained effort of advocacy, collaboration, research, and education geared toward key stakeholders, including the public.
"A primary goal of the new organization is to promote evidence-based standards of care in a variety of medical practices that yield better clinical outcomes," notes Steven J. Morris, MD, facp, facg, chairperson of the Coalition and CEO of Atlanta Gastroenterology Associates. In addition, Dr. Morris adds that "the Coalition wants to ensure that quality is never compromised by minimizing physician input or by the arbitrary efforts of insurers to save dollars at the expense of human lives."
Stanford Plavin, MD, vice chairperson of the Coalition and managing partner of Ambulatory Anesthesia of Atlanta, states: "It is tragic that many people avoid colorectal cancer screening due to fear or anxiety. Colorectal cancer screening can be achieved in an effective manner without discomfort. I encourage patients and providers to join us in this most important effort to maintain all effective options for colorectal cancer screening that will enable us to achieve higher screening rates and make a positive impact on cancer survival."
"In order to achieve a higher colorectal cancer screening rate, physicians must be able to choose optimal forms of sedation to encourage patients to undergo screening colonoscopies," elaborates Dr. Morris. He observes further that "75% of new colon cancer cases occur in persons with no known risk factors, regular colorectal cancer screenings are crucial to the prevention, early detection, and successful treatment of this disease."
The Coalition will work from a broad perspective to establish public policy consensus on the importance of physician and patient choice necessary for sustained improvement in colorectal cancer screening rates. One of the first written comments submitted by the Coalition relates to a proposed medical policy by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Tennessee regarding the use of anesthesia services for routine gastrointestinal endoscopy.
To learn more about the activities of the National Coalition for Quality Colorectal Cancer Screening and Care, visit www.preventingcolorectalcancer.org, or contact the Coalition toll-free at (866) 461-9296 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.