Colorectal Cancer


[Image description: A rectangular graphic with a white background. The top of the graphic features a wide blue text banner. White text reads "Colorectal cancer is a", and rainbow-gradient text below reads "queer issue". Underneath is a single horizontal line made of intersectional Pride colors. Below is blue text that reads "Learn where you can go in the Lehigh Valley for LGBTQ-welcoming colorectal screening". The bottom of the graphic features horizontal intersectional Pride stripes, and the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center logo is in the lower right corner.]

 

BACKGROUND

Colorectal cancers are one of the most common types of cancers in the United States [1]. However, colorectal cancer is one of the most preventable [2].

At the first stage of detection, survival rates for colorectal cancers are as high as 90% [3]. That's why routine screenings are so important. 

Colorectal cancers are any cancer that affect the colon and/or rectum. It can sometimes be referred to bowel cancer. This cancer often begins as a growth, called a polyp, in the inner lining of the colon or rectum. Most people who have polyps are unaware that they have them, because polyps do not present any symptoms. Colorectal examinations are the best way to find polyps, and some polyps are precancerous. 

Several types of colorectal cancer screenings are available and are covered by most health insurance plans, as required by the Affordable Care Act. The CDC recommends that adults over the age of 45 be screened for colorectal cancer for early detection and treatment [4].

If you need healthcare insurance, Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center can help. Visit BradburySullivanCenter.org/Pennie

 

THE NEED

Among LGBTQ+ Pennsylvanians for whom colorectal cancer screenings are recommended, over 18% have never been screened, and nearly 4% have not been screened within the past 10 years [5]. This means that more than 1 in 5 LGBTQ+ Pennsylvanians who are recommended for colorectal cancer screenings are not receiving the preventative care that they need [5].

 

BARRIERS TO CARE

There are numerous barriers which prevent LGBTQ individuals from receiving valuable preventative care such as cancer screenings. According to the 2020 Pennsylvania LGBTQ Health Needs Assessment, 19.2% of LGBTQ+ individuals report not having a primary healthcare provider [5]. Of those that had a primary healthcare provider, 1 in 4 of them report having had a negative experience with a healthcare professional, and 1 in 3 LGBTQ people report they did not believe most of their healthcare providers have medical expertise related to LGBTQ+ health needs [5]. These experiences may be more common among some LGBTQ+ persons, including transgender and non-binary individuals and BIPOC individuals. 

 

THE 2022 CAMPAIGN 

Our colorectal campaign is an evidenced-based campaign to increase colorectal screening among LGBT people aged 45 and older in the Lehigh Valley. Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center is hosting two events and posting informational graphics on our social media for this campaign. 

On March 25, 2022, the center will host a virtual Q&A panel with colorectal cancer screening providers and representatives from Cancer Support Community of the Greater Lehigh Valley. Event details to come. For more information, contact [email protected].

On March 4, 2022, the center hosted a vegan cooking demonstration with Butterhead Kitchen LLC, a nurse practitioner from LVHN, and representatives from Olympus Corporation of the Americas. This event was not recorded. To read more about this past event, click here.

Additionally, informative graphics will be posted on many of our social media platforms throughout the month of March. Click on the below icons to be directed to our social media accounts.

 

The campaign was funded through a grant from Olympus Corporation of the Americas.

 

LOCAL LGBTQ-KNOWLEDGABLE PROVIDERS

LVPG General, Bariatric & Trauma Surgery - Cedar Crest 

1240 South Cedar Crest Blvd, Suite 308 

Allentown PA 18103

(610) 402-1350

 

LVPG General and Bariatric Surgery - Muhlenberg 

2649 Schoenersville Road, Suite 202 

Bethlehem PA 18017  

(484) 884-1007


Sources:

  1. “Common Cancer Types.” National Cancer Institute, 22 Apr. 2021, https://www.cancer.gov/types/common-cancers.
  2. What Can Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Communities Do to Advance the Shared Goal to Screen 80% of Age-Eligible Adults for Colorectal Cancer?” National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable, 27 Mar. 2019, https://nccrt.org/resource/80-in-every-community-lgbt/.
  3. “Colorectal Cancer - Statistics.” Cancer.Net, 20 Apr. 2021, https://www.cancer.net/cancer-types/colorectal-cancer/statistics.
  4. “What Should I Know about Screening for Colorectal Cancer?” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 8 Feb. 2021, https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/colorectal/basic_info/screening/index.htm.
  5. Research & Evaluation Group at Public Health Management Corporation and Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center. (2020). 2020 Pennsylvania LGBTQ Health Needs Assessment.

 

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