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Advocate Trinity Hospital

Presentation Notes

Evidence-Based Practice podium presentation at Nursing Passion: Re-Igniting the Art & Science, Advocate Aurora Health Nursing & Research Conference 2022; November 9, 2022; virtual.


Background and/or rationale: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most common cancer in the United States, with an estimated 140,250 new cases diagnosed in 2018. With the increased incidences of CRC for people under 50, the average risk screening has been lowered to 45 years old to have a screening colonoscopy (Healy et al., 2019).

Aim or purpose of Initiative: Direct Access Screening Colonoscopy (DASC) was implemented to expedite and simplify the process of scheduling screening colonoscopies. This program allows patients who meet specific criteria to skip a gastroenterologist consultation before scheduling a colonoscopy. The purpose of this initiative is to decrease CRC.

Implementation Plan: DASC patients, ages 45-75 years, reasonably good health, never had a colonoscopy or is over ten years since their last colonoscopy, prior history of colon polyps over five years ago, and or family history of colon cancer are referred by their primary physician. The Nurse Navigator reviews the patient's information including recent history and physical, current lab, referral, and pertinent medical information. The Nurse Navigator contacts the patient, reviews history and medication, then schedules the patient’s screening colonoscopy.

Outcomes: In 2021, 87 DASC patients had their procedure performed at our hospital, with one malignancy found and 91 polyps removed which will require surveillance colonoscopies based on the pathology of the colon polyps. In 2022 (January - March), 30 DASC patients have completed their screening colonoscopy; two malignancies were found and 18 pre-cancerous polyps.

Implication for Practice: The DASC program allows the patient to schedule the procedure without an office visit with the Gastroenterologist. The role of the Nurse Navigator is the driving force in the success of the DASC program as well as the dedication of the gastroenterologists to support the program. This process allows for earlier detection of CRC, decrease in the overall incidence of CRC, and improved patient outcomes.

Document Type

Oral/Podium Presentation




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