Recent data from the Centers for Disease Control reveals that we need to do a better job of getting cancer screening tests. Screenings for breast, cervical and colorectal cancer were below targets in 2013. Some twenty percent or more of women are still not getting one or more of these tests.
The CDC in fact found no improvement in cancer screening rates between 2010 and 2013.
- Only about three out of four women (73 percent) between the ages of 50 and 74 received a mammography screening. The recommendation is a screening every two years for people in that age group. (For more information, check out “Do mammograms do more harm than good?“)
- Four out of five women (80 percent) reported getting a Pap smear to test for cervical cancer, fewer than in previous years.
- Fewer then six out of ten women (58.2 percent) between 50 and 74 reported getting a screening for colorectal cancer.
If you have Medicare, it will cover these screenings in full. It also covers several other preventive tests in full if you qualify, including nutrition counseling, weight-loss counseling, smoking cessation counseling.