DDAR Blog

Colonoscopy - Preventative Health Service

Did you know that the implementation of health care reform regulations has begun with a significant change involving your access to “preventative health services?” The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) now requires that all health care insurance plans cover preventative services, including colorectal cancer screening for individuals aged 50 or older, without any cost-sharing to the patient. This means that all insurance plans are now obligated to provide first-dollar coverage for your 5- or 10-year screening colonoscopy. The PPACA regulations specify that plans cannot impose cost-sharing requirements, such as co-pays, coinsurance or deductibles for any of the US Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF)-designated preventative services.

What this means for you is that 100% of the allowed amount of your screening colonoscopy should be covered by your insurance carrier. Our billing staff will affix a modifier to your insurance claim to alert your carrier that this procedure was a screening procedure so they do not shift any of the allowed costs to you. So don’t delay! Schedule your screening colonoscopy today. Colorectal cancer can be prevented when you commit to routine screening.

March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Despite its high incidence, colon cancer is one of the most detectable and, if found early enough, most treatable forms of cancer. Over 90% of all colon cancers can be prevented through early detection. That’s significant! So if you’re 50 or older, getting a screening test for colon cancer could actually save your life. Here’s how: Colon cancer usually starts from polyps in the colon or rectum. A polyp is a growth that shouldn't be there. Over time, some polyps can develop into cancer. A screening colonoscopy can find polyps, so they can be removed before becoming malignant. A screening colonoscopy can also find colon cancer early. When found early, the chances of being cured are good!

You should begin regular screening for colorectal cancer at 50 years of age. We recommend every 5 years thereafter. Some people are at a higher risk than others for developing colorectal cancer. Having any of these things may increase your risk—

  • Inflammatory bowel disease.
  • A personal or family history of colorectal polyps or colorectal cancer.
  • Genetic syndromes, like familial adenomatous polyposis or hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (also known as Lynch syndrome).

If you think you may be at high risk for colorectal cancer, talk to us about when and how often to get tested. Don’t put this on hold. Don’t make your body wait any longer. Call us and put your mind at ease.

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