Nova Scotia's health authority is resuming the home screening program for colon cancer after it was suspended due to COVID-19.
The mailing of home screening kits was halted in March when endoscopy services in the province were reduced to only emergency procedures, like many areas of medicine.
Colonoscopies resumed in May. After working through a backlog of 1,600 people awaiting colonoscopies, officials with the colon cancer prevention program are ready to resume home screening.
The kit tests for trace amounts of blood in the colon. If that's detected, it means a follow-up test is required for a screening colonoscopy to understand the reason for the blood.
The home screening kits are automatically mailed every two years to Nova Scotians who are between the ages of 50 and 74 and registered with MSI.
"An individual born in November 1968, for example, can expect to receive a kit in November or December of this year," said Dr. Don MacIntosh, medical director of the colon cancer prevention program, said in a news release.
"Nova Scotians, who were due to receive a kit between March and September this year, will not automatically receive one. Instead, Nova Scotians in this category, who are interested in completing a home screening kit, will be asked to call and request one. Those we do not hear from will automatically receive their next kit in 2022."
Nova Scotians who were due to receive a home screening kit between March and September this year can call 1-866-599-2267 to request one.
Individuals who have a screening test at home that has not expired may also complete it and send it to the lab.
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