Jones to do presentations
Dr. Andrew Jones will be presenting three talks on Colorectal Cancer during March, National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. He will speak Monday, March 9th at the Cottonwood Lions Club and Wednesday, March 11 to the Nezperce Lions Club. Heíll also hold a public forum on Wednesday, March 18 at 4:30 p.m. in the Kamiah Chamber Welcome Center on Main Street.
Free Fecal Occult Blood Test kits will be distributed to interested audience members at each presentation. The completed kits be processed by the SMHC Lab at no cost. The FOBT kit tests for blood in the stool which can be a sign of colorectal cancer. The test kits provide instructions for use.
ďAs a doctor, it is frustrating for me sometimes because I know colorectal cancer can be prevented through screening colonoscopies where precancerous polyps can be removed and the patient receives a clean bill of health. Itís a simple procedure that can save a life, yet not everyone gets one when they should,Ē said Dr. Jones. ďItís one of the only cancers that can be prevented before any symptoms develop. I understand that people may not exactly look forward to the prep and the procedure, but, hey, itís usually only once every ten years and it can save their life.Ē
Dr. Jones is a member North Central District Health Departmentís Colorectal Cancer Coalition. They are providing a variety of educational handouts at each presentation. The goal of the coalition is to increase the number of CRC screenings in District Two.
Dr. Jones and most of the other physicians at St. Maryís perform colonoscopies on an outpatient basis at the Cottonwood facility. In an average year over 240 endoscopic procedures are performed at SMHC. Dr. Jones will talk about the simple procedure and other screening options.
Based on prior years data, Idahoís Cancer Data Registry estimates that approximately 60 people in Idaho and Lewis County will be diagnosed with Colorectal Cancer over a 5 year period. Between 1997 & 2006 only about 28.6 % of Idaho County residents and 42% of Lewis County residents who should have been screened were screened.
The American Cancer Society recommends a screening colonoscopy at age 50 or earlier if there is a family history. Medicare covers several colorectal cancer screening options. The SMHC Business office can assist people with questions about Medicare and private insurance coverage, 962-3251.