The American Cancer Society (ACS) is proud to announce the results of a partnership between Community Health Services (CHS) and Saint Francis Hospital which resulted in twenty-one diagnostic colonoscopies to uninsured patients throughout Greater Hartford.
The partnership, funded by an American Cancer Society grant, focused on increasing the CHS colorectal cancer screening rate by providing their patients with fecal immunochemical test (FIT) kits. After dispersed and completed, twenty-three uninsured patients had a positive FIT result that required a diagnostic colonoscopy. Shortly after, Saint Francis Hospital joined the effort as a partner administering the colonoscopies at their facility.
CHS patients who received positive FIT results visited the health center before their colonoscopy to learn more about the procedure, receive financial counseling, and learn how to get treatment covered. The colonoscopy prep was donated, and Saint Francis Hospital created a base rate for the procedure. As of December 2019, twenty-one colonoscopies were completed. Out of those, nine patients had pre-cancerous polyps removed.
CHS serves a mostly underserved and very ethnically diverse community where patients experience many obstacles to a productive daily life. Their role is not only to provide exceptional healthcare services across all clinical disciplines, but to provide outreach and education on the importance of regular medical visits and to promote the effectiveness of regular cancer screenings, especially for colorectal cancer. Regular screenings will help prevent later-stage diagnosis and subsequent higher mortality rates from this disease.
March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month and the American Cancer Society recommends all adults get screened for colorectal cancer starting no later than age 45. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States when men and women are combined.
In 2020, it is estimated that 1,520 Connecticut residents will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer and 460 will succumb to the disease. Early detection is key to preventing colorectal cancer or catching it early when it is most treatable. A colonoscopy is not the only test option for colorectal cancer screening. There are other simple, affordable options, including test that can be done at home. Talk to your health care provider about the best screening option for you and visit www.cancer.org/getscreened for more information.
About the American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society is a global grassroots force of 1.5 million volunteers dedicated to saving lives, celebrating lives, and leading the fight for a world without cancer. From breakthrough research, to free lodging near treatment, a 24/7/365 live helpline, free rides to treatment, and convening powerful activists to create awareness and impact, the Society is the only organization attacking cancer from every angle. For more information go to www.cancer.org.
About Community Health Services
Community Health Services (CHS) is the oldest and largest health center of its kind in the city of Hartford, Connecticut. Since its establishment in 1970, CHS has grown from its humble beginnings in the office of its founding father Dr. Evans Daniels to the current three-story state of the art clinical facility at 500 Albany Avenue in Hartford. In 2013, recognizing the need of residents, CHS also opened a primary care facility at 503 Windsor Avenue in Windsor, CT. Accredited by the Joint Commission, CHS is committed to continuous quality improvement, patient safety and the highest standard of care. In 2019, 19,186 unique individuals were treated at CHS for more than 90,000 visits across all clinical disciplines. No one has ever been denied care at CHS due to financial or insurance status.