PASADENA, Calif. — Kaiser Permanente Southern California set a new Guinness World Record today with 7,240* colorectal cancer screenings completed in one day at multiple sites. A dedicated team of more than 300 Kaiser Permanente primary care physicians, specialists, nurses and medical staff at multiple facilities throughout Southern California, administrated 342 colonoscopies, 44 sigmoidoscopies and collected 6,854 at-home fecal immunochemical tests (FIT) during the eight hour event to increase public awareness about the importance of getting regular colorectal cancer screenings.
Since 2008, Kaiser Permanente Southern California has had a 35 percent decline in colorectal cancer cases as a result of an aggressive screening campaign fueled by the organization’s comprehensive electronic health information system, which identifies those who need screening.
“Kaiser Permanente is committed to reducing the number of deaths from colorectal cancer,” said Edward M. Ellison, MD, executive medical director of the Southern California Permanente Medical Group. “Evidence shows that screening for colorectal cancer saves lives. By encouraging our members to be screened, we’re often able to identify and remove polyps from the colon before they become malignant, greatly lowering their risk of developing colorectal cancer.”
With appropriate screening, colorectal cancer is one of the most preventable forms of cancer. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, although colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, as many as 60 percent of these deaths could be prevented with early detection.
In March of 2011, Kaiser Permanente’s San Diego Medical Center set a Guinness World Record for the largest colon cancer screening at multiple locations, with 546 screenings at 11 locations in the San Diego area.
Kaiser Permanente, in line with the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendations, encourages its members age 50 and above to undergo a yearly at-home FIT test, a colonoscopy every 10 years, or a sigmoidoscopy every 5 years. Adults in this age group should consult their physicians about their medical histories and what colorectal cancer screening test is best for them.