A little more Canada bashing
Looks like someone hasn’t followed through on the cost-benefit equation here. From the Montreal Gazette:
Quebecers hoping to be screened for colon cancer are facing up to a year-long wait for diagnostic tests that could save their lives…[E]xperts suggest that colonoscopy screening could prevent up to 90 per cent of colon cancers. That’s because polyps that could develop into cancer are removed during the scope.
Canada spends about $500 million a year treating colorectal cancer, [Professor of Medicine William] Paterson said. Surgery can be arranged within weeks of a cancer diagnosis, he said.
“Treatment is not a problem. But that patient may have waited a year to get a colonoscopy and maybe they wouldn’t have had to have the surgery if they’d had access to a colonoscopy at the appropriate time,” Paterson said.
But not everyone agrees that emphasis should be placed on improving the screening rate:
Paul Brunet, director of the provincial patients’ rights committee, questioned the benefits of colon cancer screening when “it’s more urgent to give people treatment once they get the diagnosis. Because even then there are delays.”
Here’s a suggestion for you non-aggressive Canadian types. If the guideline is to get a colonoscopy when you turn 50, request one at 49 instead.June 29, 2006