Exact Sciences Corp, Madison, Wis, recently announced that the American Cancer Society’s guidelines for colorectal cancer screening now reflect the commercial availability of Cologuard, the company’s noninvasive stool DNA colorectal cancer screening test.
The American Cancer Society (ACS) guidelines include Cologuard in a recommended list of screening options for colorectal cancer. ACS guidelines also reflect the assessment of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that Cologuard testing should be performed every 3 years for patients 50 and older who do not have symptoms or an increased risk of colorectal cancer.
Exact Sciences is a molecular diagnostics company focused on the early detection and prevention of colorectal cancer. The company has exclusive intellectual property protecting its noninvasive, molecular screening technology for the detection of colorectal cancer.
Available by prescription only, Cologuard is designed to detect DNA alterations and blood released from cancer and precancerous colon lesions and has been proven to find 92% of colorectal cancers in average-risk patients, with 87% specificity, using only a single sample. Cologuard does not require medication, dietary restrictions, or bowel preparation prior to taking the test.
Cologuard is the only FDA-approved noninvasive stool DNA screening test for colorectal cancer. Cologuard offers people 50 years and older who are at average risk for colorectal cancer an easy-to-use screening test that they can initiate in the privacy of their own home.
Medicare covers Cologuard testing for individuals aged 50 to 85 fitting these criteria once every 3 years, at no cost to patients. Updated information on the ACS website also describes the process by which patients can access Cologuard, including information about collecting and sending samples to the lab for testing, and the latest information on Medicare coverage.
Since 1980, ACS has introduced and periodically updated guidelines or guidance related to screening and informed decision-making about tests for early detection of cancers of the breast, cervix, colon and rectum, endometrium, lung, and prostate. ACS develops guidelines for cancer screening to meet the needs of clinicians, the general public, and policymakers.
“ACS’s updated information regarding Cologuard is based on ACS’s inclusion of Exact Sciences’ first stool DNA test among the recommended options for colorectal cancer screening in 2008, and the recent availability of the new test,” says Kevin Conroy, president, chairman, and CEO of Exact Sciences. “These updated guidelines mark a pivotal benchmark in providing patients and clinicians with information and access to this accurate and convenient colorectal cancer screening option.
“Colorectal cancer remains the second-leading cancer killer in the United States due to low screening rates,” Conroy says. “These guidelines provide people with important information on the screening options available to them. We hope these guidelines will also encourage more people to get screened, and contribute significantly to the ACS and National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable shared goal of reaching 80% screened for colorectal cancer by 2018.”
For additional information, visit Exact Sciences Corp.