An NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center
By City of Hope | March 2, 2017
Colorectal cancer is the fourth most common type of cancer and the second deadliest. Despite those grim statistics, in most states less than 20 percent of racial and ethnic minorities have been screened for CRC within the past year.

For physicians and scientists at City of Hope, that number is far too low.

"Here we have one of the few tests that can truly prevent cancer and save lives," said Kimlin Tam Ashing, Ph.D., a professor at City of Hope. "Asians and Latinos have some of the lowest levels of CRC screening in the country. Unfortunately, African-Americans have the highest likelihood of developing the disease – and the greatest mortality rates."

Ashing’s father, a Chinese immigrant, lost his own battle with colorectal cancer.

"Cancer early detection and screening are very personal for me," she said. "I began my regular CRC screening at 35, so I know I can prevent myself from ever having a CRC diagnosis."

Increasing colorectal screening rates in the U.S. is a national priority, part of the Cancer Moonshot program announced in October of last year. In response, the National Cancer Institute’s Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities launched Screen to Save, a colorectal cancer screening and awareness initiative.

City of Hope works with Screen to Save to increase colorectal screening rates among men and women 50 and older – especially those from racially and ethnically diverse communities.

"We’re really focused on education and awareness," said Mayra Serrano, M.P.H., C.H.E.S., manager of City of Hope’s Center of Community Alliance for Research & Education, or CCARE. "We teach people about colorectal cancer and the benefits of screening."

Serrano said that City of Hope partners with other local health care organizations to provide free CRC screenings to the public.

"We offer screening kits to the community and help them fill out the necessary paperwork," she said. "The staff at White Memorial in East Los Angeles then handles the lab analysis, reporting and follow-up at no cost to the patient. We’re targeting low-income people over 50 who have never been screened, or have not been screened recently. It’s a great partnership.

This Saturday, March 4, City of Hope will be providing free breast cancer screenings and CRC screening kits to low-income and uninsured women at the Duarte Health Fair in Duarte, California. Click here for more details.


If you are looking for a second opinion about your diagnosis or consultation about your treatment, request an appointment online or contact us at 800-826-HOPE. Please visit Making Your First Appointment for more information.


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