The full provincial Colon Screening Program is now available in most health authorities across BC.*
Asymptomatic patients between the ages of 50 and 74 can be registered in the Colon Screening Program as follows:
NOTE: FIT is NOT recommended for individuals less than 50 or over 74 years of age. Individuals between 75 and 85 years of age should be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Regardless of age, FIT is not appropriate for individuals who are medically unfit to undergo colonoscopy.
Physicians do not have to complete the Colonoscopy Referral Form
for patients with abnormal FIT results if the Colon Screening Program is copied on the lab report. The BC Cancer Agency will facilitate the referral of these patients to the appropriate health authority for colonoscopy.
Higher than average risk is defined as having at least one of the following:
- One first degree relative diagnosed with colorectal cancer diagnosed under the age of 60; or,
- Two or more first degree relatives with colorectal cancer diagnosed at any age; or,
- A personal history of adenoma(s).
The provincial Colon Screening Program promotes early detection and prevention of colorectal cancer. The program is NOT intended for:
- Individuals who are up to date for colon screening.
- Patients who have had a FIT in the preceding 2 years, or colonoscopy or flexible sigmoidoscopy in the preceding 10 years for average risk patients; or a colonoscopy in the preceding 5 years for higher than average risk patients.
- Individuals who have a personal history of colorectal cancer, ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease.
- These patients should continue to obtain care through their specialist or health care provider.
- Individuals who currently have symptoms, e.g., rectal bleeding, persistent change in bowel habits, abdominal pain, unintentional weight loss or iron deficiency anemia.
- These patients should be referred to a specialist. No FIT required.
- Individuals who are on a definite surveillance plan through a specialist.
* The program is currently not available in the North.