Frequently Asked Questions
What is 70x2020?
The 70x2020 Colorectal Cancer Screening Initiative is a statewide grassroots effort to ensure that at least 70 percent of Mississippians are up-to-date with recommended colorectal cancer screening by the year 2020. The 70x2020 Colorectal Cancer Screening Partnership is a new and growing statewide coalition of organizations and community champions who are determined to meet or exceed this goal. 70x2020 Partners range from large national organizations to state medical organizations to small churches in the Mississippi Delta to individual CRC champions. 70x2020 formally began at a small round table meeting of 15 key stakeholders on April 22, 2014, at the University of Mississippi Medical Center Cancer Center and Research Institute. Today, the 70x2020 Partnership has more than 570 partners and continues to grow.
Is anyone else doing this?
Yes. Mississippi is part of a national effort to encourage individuals to be screened to lower colorectal cancer incidence and deaths. The national effort, promoted by the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable, is seeking 80 percent of eligible people screened by 2018. The UMMC Cancer Center and Research Institute is a member of this Roundtable.
Why are Mississippi's benchmarks different from the national benchmarks?
There are several reasons:
- When the 70x2020 Initiative began, Mississippi had the highest colorectal cancer death rate and incidence rate in the nation. It also had one of the lowest screening rates in the nation.
- Certain regions of Mississippi, such as in the Delta, had few gastroenterologists and no private gastroenterology clinics to provide high-quality colonoscopy screens for all Mississippians 50 or older in those areas.
- That problem was compounded by the hurdles facing those who do not have health insurance or the financial resources to pay for colonoscopies.
Every member of the 70x2020 Partnership really wants to see 100 percent of Mississippians up-to-date with colorectal cancer screening recommendations today, but we must first address the reality of our situation.
How will the 70x2020 Initiative accomplish this goal?
Our partners developed a Strategic Plan containing 10 tactics. Volunteers serve on task forces to implement each of these tactics, based on their own talents and interests. It is important to remember that many screening options exist, so even where access to colonoscopies may be limited, there are other less expensive, scientifically validated, high-quality screening tests, such as FIT, for the early detection of colorectal cancer. By dramatically increasing consumer demand for colorectal cancer screening in Mississippi, we believe that the market-based supply of high-quality screening services will follow
I'm not old enough for screening. What can I do?
Encourage someone you love who is 50 or older to be screened. Join us in urging others to do the same at #Ihadthetalk and #GetScreened4Dak. Even if you are old enough and have been screened, urge a family member or friend who is postponing screening to do it now.
Second, you can purchase a “Colon Cancer” specialty license plate for your vehicle. Mississippi is the first state in the nation to offer such a tag, and you can order one from your County Tax Collector’s Office. These car tags help in two ways. First, they literally spread the message, “Prevent colon cancer … Get screened!” throughout Mississippi. Second, $24 from each plate supports the 70x2020 Colorectal Cancer Screening Initiative at UMMC.