Greater Harrisburg's Community Magazine

Harrisburg, Penn State to conduct free colorectal cancer screenings for residents

MLK City Government Center

While stopping the spread of COVID has been a top priority lately, Harrisburg is offering a way for residents to take other preventative measures for their wellbeing.

On Oct. 6, the city’s health office, along with the Penn State Cancer Institute Office for Health Equity, will host a free colorectal cancer screening and education event at city hall.

“Caught in the early stage, colorectal cancer is 90% curable,” said Eugene J. Lengerich, associate director of health disparities and engagement at Penn State Cancer Institute. “Together, we can conquer cancer. We are extremely excited about this partnership with the city of Harrisburg.”

According to Penn State, colorectal cancer cases are increasing in people younger than 50. Where the screening age used to begin at 50, recent recommendations from The American Cancer Society advise screening at age 45.

If detected early, colorectal cancer is one of the most preventable diseases, according to Penn State.

Additionally, Black Americans have the highest colorectal cancer incidence and mortality rates of all racial groups in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society.

Harrisburg residents ages 45 to 75 years old, can receive a free colorectal cancer screening from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Oct. 6 at the MLK City Government Center in downtown Harrisburg.

Through the Secure Colorectal Cancer Screening Options Prevent and Educate (SCOPE) initiative, FITKITS—free, at-home, easy to use, non-invasive fecal test kits will be provided to risk-age residents.

“After much collaboration and hard work, having Penn State Cancer Institute’s community health workers on-site to enhance the educational experience will be so beneficial,” said Harrisburg Health Officer Nelva Wright. “We hope this is the first of many outreach efforts.”

Harrisburg and Penn State’s Cancer Institute will hold free colorectal cancer screenings at 10 N. 2nd St., Harrisburg on Oct. 6. For more information, visit the city’s website.

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