FIT Screening Initiative with Free Clinics
In 2017, HCB2 was invited to partner with Health Brigade, a local free clinic, to distribute at home colorectal cancer screening tests (FIT) to uninsured patients. Lacking health insurance, patients may be unable to act upon the recommendation to get screened for cancer. The out of pocket costs for uninsured patients to receive a colonoscopy are another barrier to screening. Many of these patients in the Richmond area are likely to receive help through Access Now in receiving a screening colonoscopy, but the wait list for these patients can be months long. For those patients that are 50 years of age or older and of average risk for colorectal cancer, the FIT screening tool is an inexpensive and less invasive option that can be conducted at home. Through this initiative, HCB2’s original collaboration with the Health Brigade created a model which broke down some of the barriers that many in the uninsured population face in taking appropriate and timely action against colorectal cancer. HCB2 expanded the FIT Screening services to Crossover Ministries and the Healthy Heart clinic in early 2018. HCB2 now offers Free Screening services to five free clinics in the Richmond, VA area.
FluFIT Initiative with Local Health Departments
From 2016 – 2019, HCB2 has partnered with Henrico Health Department to offer FIT education and screening tools to community members during their annual flu shot event. With the help of volunteers, HCB2 reaches hundreds of people each year to provide colorectal cancer screening education and enhance understanding of family history and personal risk, knowing the symptoms of colorectal cancer and the importance of catching it early (when there are often no symptoms), and the ease of screening at home with a stool test (FIT). The FIT test is a relatively inexpensive, less invasive and readily accessible test for those with an average risk for colorectal cancer, which should be conducted yearly.
Colorectal Cancer Screening Tips
Be Confident. Start the Conversation with your Doctor.
First, TELL your doctor:
- If you have a family history of polyps, or a family history of colorectal cancer.
- If you are having pain, bloating, blood in stool, chronic constipation, irregular bowel habits at ANY AGE.
- Remind your doctor you are over 50, and African Americans please remind your doctor if you are over age 45.
Second, ASK your doctor about:
- Simple in-home non-invasive screening options, See below to read about FIT and Cologuard.
- Scheduling a colonoscopy.
- Proper prepping procedure. No fear, scroll down and read below.
Two in-home Screening Tools for Colorectal Cancer to talk about with your doctor: FIT and Cologuard.
The Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT) is a noninvasive, easy method to test for occult (non-visible) blood in the stool which could signal an issue which needs further investigating. The test is completed in the privacy of your own home and then the patient mails test to the designated lab to complete the screen. The results are sent to the doctor for follow up.
Cologuard is a cutting edge method of in-home colorectal cancer screening. Cologuard is a stool DNA screen which tests for non-visible blood in the stool AND it is the only test that uses stool DNA technology to detect the shedding of cells that may indicate cancer or precancer. The screening tool is sent directly to your home after your doctor places the order. The completed test is sent back to the Exact Sciences lab to complete the screen and the doctor is notified of the results.
Do not let fear nor misconceptions stop you from receiving the proper early detection procedures that can save your life!
Time for a colonoscopy?
Download your complete guide to colonoscopy prep! Don’t fear the bowel prep! We have effective tips to help you clean out your colon. Prep, Proceed, Protect! Remember, after the procedure, your gut needs to recolonize the ‘good guy’ bacteria. Eat foods rich in pre and probiotics. Check out the high quality foods we place in our Healing Belly Basket which can help support gut health.