Improved outreach methods elevated the clinic’s screening rate from 46 percent to 68 percent.
MILWAUKEE—Progressive Community Health Centers (PCHC), a Federally Qualified Health Center specializing in culturally competent health care, was recognized as a Champion of Hope at the American Cancer Society (ACS) of Wisconsin’s Champions of Hope Gala in Milwaukee. PCHC was nominated for its improved colorectal cancer screening rates. PCHC served more than 14,000 patients in 2021 with more than 83 percent identifying as African American and helped hundreds of patients access colorectal cancer screening. Multiple touchpoints of outreach elevated the clinic’s screening rate from 46 percent to 68 percent.
Through grant support from ACS and Kohl’s Healthy Families program, PCHC helped adults learn about what they can do to prevent colorectal cancer and minimized barriers to screening. Sara Richter, program manager for American Cancer Society and Kohl’s Healthy Families, spoke highly of the Progressive team who worked through the pandemic to increase outreach. “[They’re] a fantastic team who truly provides patient-centric and culturally competent care to advance colorectal screening,” Richter said.
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death among people in the United States and disproportionately affects the African American community—with a 20 percent increased likelihood to be diagnosed and 40 percent mortality due to lower screening rates and late-stage diagnosis. Colorectal cancer is beginning to affect younger adults. “Black Panther” actor Chadwick Boseman died in 2020 from colon cancer at 43 years old.
The Champion of Hope Award recognizes a community partner or volunteer for their contributions to advancing the American Cancer Society’s mission and helping to save lives from cancer.