Select Key Metrics on Colorectal Cancer

colorectal cancer screening CRC Screening Rates

Percentage of adults completing CRC screening (colonoscopy, CT colonography, sigmoidoscopy, stool test) in comparison to the total population.

colorectal cancer mortality CRC Mortality Rates

Number of deaths attributable to CRC per 100,000 people per year.


CRC Mortality Rates

Despite similar rates of CRC incidence in non-Hispanic Black and white Philadelphians, mortality rates are higher in Black patients with CRC.

CRC Incidence and Mortality Rates

Source: The State of Cancer in Philadelphia, Drexel Urban Health Collaborative | September 2020

CRC Screening Rates


Regardless of individual socioeconomic status, living in neighborhoods with low socioeconomic status in Philadelphia -- which are composed predominantly of non-Hispanic Black and Hispanic residents -- is associated with lower rates of CRC screening


This may help explain why cancer deaths from common cancers like CRC are more frequent in lower income neighborhoods in Philadelphia.

Map of CRC screening rates in Philly

Source: Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 500 Cities: Census Tract-level Data, 2019 release.


Disparities in CRC incidence and mortality may result from differences in exposure to risk factors like diet and sedentary behaviors; limited access to prevention, screening, and follow-up of abnormal test results; and lack of access to high quality treatment. These individual, provider, health system, community, and policy level factors collectively perpetuate disparities in CRC outcomes by race.

Ongoing Efforts in the Philadelphia Community

Researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania conducted a randomized clinical trial aiming to boost rates of CRC screening at a community health center that predominantly serves Black Philadelphians. By making it the default to mail at-home test kits to patients overdue for screening unless they opted out via text message, screening rates increased by more than 1,000 percent.

Efforts listed here may be independent of Accelerate Health Equity. Check back to learn about a broader list of health equity efforts.