Each year, approximately 400 North Dakotans will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer, and even more staggering, approximately 135 of them will die from the disease.
In an effort to decrease these rates, we have partnered with the North Dakota Department of Health’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control to increase colorectal cancer screening rates for North Dakotans in need.
We’re part of the North Dakota Colorectal Cancer Screening Initiative, a state and federally funded grant program that removes the most common barriers to screenings: cost and awareness. With the initiative, patients receive screenings at no cost, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota serves as a partner by administering the claims associated with screenings.
Northland Community Health Center based in Turtle Lake, N.D., and Family HealthCare based in Fargo have received grants to assist patients in need.
The primary focus is to provide access to screenings to those who are:
• 50 to 64 years old
• Low income
• Uninsured or underinsured
• Due or past due for screenings
• Average or increased risk for colorectal cancer
In North Dakota, 38 percent of people due for colorectal cancer screenings don’t get them.
Nervous about getting a colonoscopy?
Check out our blog explaining myths surrounding screenings to find out why you should make an appointment today.
Andrea Dinneen is Public Relations Manager at Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota.