TriStar StoneCrest March 07, 2017

"80% by 2018" is a shared goal to have 80% of adults aged 50 and older regularly screened for colorectal cancer by 2018

Nashville, TN - Colorectal cancer screening has been proven to save lives. Sarah Cannon Cancer Institute at TriStar StoneCrest Medical Center, as part of Sarah Cannon Cancer Institute at TriStar Health, today announced that it has made the pledge to help increase colorectal cancer screening rates by supporting the 80% by 2018 initiative, led by the American Cancer Society (ACS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable (a coalition co-founded by ACS and CDC).

TriStar Health leaders announced their pledge during a luncheon recognizing 17 employer partners from across Middle Tennessee and Southern Kentucky who brought colorectal cancer screenings into their workplace prevention program. Through their partnership with TriStar Health's Workplace Partners program, more than 2,000 people were told that regular screening is one of the most powerful weapons for preventing colon cancer. Of those, 183 received a stool test and 111 participants completed a colonoscopy.

"Many people do not have a primary care physician and may only receive preventative healthcare information at work," said Kevin Kelly, MD, medical director, TriStar Health Workplace Partners. "Through the TriStar Health Workplace Partners in Prevention program, we provide the information that many people many not otherwise receive such as the need for colon cancer screenings. Our recent nomination by the American Cancer Society is evidence of our impact in the lives of our clients. We look forward to expanding our partnerships in the future and to be a positive force for healthful change in the industry."

Leaders from the following organizations in Rutherford County supported the 80% by 2018 goal by continuing colorectal cancer screenings as part of their workplace prevention program:

  • Advanced Financial
  • Cumberland Heights
  • Cumberland International Trucking
  • General Mills
  • Nashville Wire

Colorectal cancer is the nation's second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S. for men and women are combined. Through colorectal cancer screening, doctors can find and remove hidden growths (called "polyps") in the colon, before they become cancerous. Removing polyps can prevent cancer from developing.

"80% by 2018" is a National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable (NCCRT) initiative in which hundreds of organizations have committed to substantially reducing colorectal cancer as a major public health problem and are working toward the shared goal of 80% of adults aged 50 and older being regularly screened for colorectal cancer by 2018.

Leading public health organizations, such as NCCRT, CDC and the ACS are rallying organizations to embrace this shared goal. If we can achieve 80% by 2018, 277,000 cases and 203,000 colorectal cancer deaths would be prevented by 2030.

"Regular screening is a critical part of catching colon cancers at the earliest stages, and for many patients, for preventing it from developing. Colonoscopy screenings can cut the risk of colon cancer by 40%," said Casey Chollet MD, radiation oncologist, Sarah Cannon Cancer Institute at TriStarStoneCrest Medical Center. "Evidence suggests screening recommendations begin at age 50, however, recent data shows that more cases are occurring in younger generations. It is therefore important for people of all ages to be aware of their bodies and talk to their doctors if they have symptoms such as blood in the stool, changes in stool such as diarrhea, cramping or abdominal pain or unexplained weight loss."

While colorectal cancer incidence rates have dropped in the U.S. among adults 50 and older, it is still the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States, despite being highly preventable, detectable and treatable. In fact, it is estimated that in 2016, 134,490 cases of colorectal cancer will be diagnosed.

Part of the 80% by 2018 goal is to leverage the energy of multiple and diverse partners to empower communities, patients and providers to increase screening rates. The 80% by 2018 initiative consists of health care providers, health systems, communities, businesses, community health centers, government, non-profit organizations and patient advocacy groups, among others, who are committed to getting more people screened for colorectal cancer to prevent more cancers and save lives.

For more information on colorectal cancer screenings or to learn about resources in your area, visit You can also talk to a nurse 24/7 by calling askSARAH: (615) 514-2401.

Employers interested in learning more about bringing colorectal cancer screenings into their workplace prevention program through the TriStar Health Workplace Partners program may find more information by visiting or contacting program leaders directly at (615) 769-4764.