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RTI researchers author collection of papers on cancer screening

The papers examine approaches to promote multiple cancer screenings and other chronic diseases screening promotion and disease management strategies

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — Researchers at RTI International, a nonprofit research institute, have co-authored a collection of papers that examine optimal approaches to improve colorectal cancer screening uptake within health systems participating in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Colorectal Cancer Control Program’s Learning Collaborative. The study team, in collaboration with CDC, specifically focused on the method of promoting cancer screening with other regular cancer screenings or screenings for chronic diseases, an approach that could be a cost-effective, patient-centered solution to low screening rates.

The collection, titled “Assessing Optimal Approaches to Deliver Integrated Implementation of Strategies to Promote Cancer Screening,” was published in Implementation Science Communications, an official companion journal to Implementation Science.

“Integrated cancer screening programs can be cost-effective and could reduce health care disparities, but there is still plenty of room for more research,” said Sujha Subramanian, Ph.D., a Senior Fellow at RTI who led the research. “This collection establishes some baseline knowledge about the challenges and benefits of integrated approaches and the recipe for successful implementation.”

The first paper in the collection provides a conceptual framework for integrated approaches for cancer screening to support, while the second one presents findings on key factors involved in implementing integrated approaches. The final paper reports on the challenges and benefits of integrated approaches to increase cancer screening in primary care settings.

Among the  findings from the collection:

  • Four factors contributed to clinic readiness to implement integrated cancer screening programs and supporting activities: funding, clinic governance structure, information sharing within clinics, and clinic leadership support.
  • Complexity, cost, implementation climate, and engagement of appropriate staff in implementation were ranked among the most important factors to success.
  • Additional research is required to examine optimal approaches; however, lessons learned may benefit other preventive and chronic disease programs.

View the collection