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How is registry data used? 

Read below for more information about how cancer registry data is being used nationwide:



Cancer Disparities Data in North Minneapolis Communities Support the Need for Menthol Sales Restrictions

A Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) response to community concerns about cancer led to an analysis of Minnesota Cancer Reporting System (MCRS) data for two adjacent neighborhoods in Minneapolis. The results of the data analysis demonstrated disparities in cancer incidence by race, ethnicity and sex that pointed to disproportionate cancer burden from modifiable risk factors in one of the neighborhoods. Risk factors that could explain some of the disparities in cancer incidence between the two neighborhoods included cigarette smoking, alcohol use, and hepatitis and human papilloma virus (HPV) infections, all of which have the potential for intervention though targeted public health promotion campaigns.

The Department’s efforts to address cancer concerns in North Minneapolis, in particular, dovetailed with ongoing efforts to restrict the sale of menthol flavored tobacco products in Minneapolis and St. Paul, two of Minnesota’s largest cities. Menthol-containing tobacco products are a serious public health threat. The addition of menthol to flavor cigarettes and other tobacco products make smoking easier and more difficult to quit, and more attractive for youth in particular. Further, the majority (75%) of African American adults who smoke reported the use of menthol flavored cigarettes.

 A community-based coalition was already working to address the disproportionate health effects of menthol on the African American community in Minneapolis. The work of the coalition resulted in a recommendation establishing a city ordinance to limit sales of menthol-containing tobacco products to adult-only tobacco shops and liquor stores. MDH provided the results of the North-Northeast Minneapolis data analyses to decision makers in Minneapolis as compelling evidence of the disproportionate impact of cancers caused by smoking in the North Minneapolis neighborhood. These analyses were timely and provided data in support of efforts to pass ordinances to restrict the sale of menthol-containing tobacco products in both Minneapolis and St. Paul.

(For more detailed information: Success Story for Minnesota)



Leveraging Cancer Registry Data to Optimize Colorectal Cancer Screening Strategies

The opportunity exists for population-based cancer registries to support improving colorectal cancer screening efforts and patient health outcomes through data access and linkage.  The results will be used to identify best practices for colorectal cancer screening, and ultimately reduce colorectal cancer morbidity and mortality. Colorectal cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer death in the United States, and is especially burdensome among minority and medically underserved vulnerable populations. Early detection through screening is key to reducing colorectal cancer mortality, and promoting screening in order to decrease mortality has been a national goal for the past 20 years. Screening rates for colorectal cancer in underserved communities are especially low. To achieve decreases in colorectal cancer incidence and mortality, screening regimens most effective and efficient for these specific populations must be determined.

As part of an NCI initiative, the Parkland-University of Texas (UT) Southwestern PROSPR Center was established as a research centers focused on colorectal cancer screening, and the only center specifically targeting a medically underserved population. Parkland Health and Hospital System is the only safety-net health care provider in Dallas County, Texas serving the uninsured and underinsured population. Thus, partnering with Parkland to form the PROSPR center at UT Southwestern provides a unique opportunity to study colorectal cancer screening in an underserved, racially and ethnically diverse population.

 Each year, the Texas Cancer Registry (TCR) conducts a data linkage between the Parkland-UT Southwestern PROSPR cohort data and registry data to identify patients in the PROSPR cohort with a colorectal cancer diagnosis. Following the linkage, the TCR provides the researchers with cancer registry data, including treatment tumor characteristics, for those patients in the PROSPR cohort who had a diagnosis of colon or rectal cancer. The resulting linked database is used to determine whether colorectal cancer patients receive the recommended tests and treatments per the protocols established through the Parkland-UT Southwestern PROSPR center research, and to contribute linked data to the national PROSPR Statistical Coordinating Center.

 Initial findings suggest that screening participation rates in safety-net health care provider settings are higher when using specific outreach screening strategies. Ultimately, results from the analysis of the linked data will be used to improve the quality of care for Parkland patients and others receiving care through safety-net health care providers. In addition, the findings might inform future local, regional, and national efforts to improve the quality of cancer screening. Further, based on the research conducted at Parkland-UT Southwestern PROSPR Center, additional initiatives have been funded to expand colorectal screening programs with access to follow-up care.  Additionally, the Simmons Cancer Center at UT Southwestern are already improving the delivery of screening and preventative care based on the research and insights achieved at the Parkland-UT Southwestern PROSPR Research Center.

(For more detailed information: Success Story for Texas)



Health Equity Reports” Assess Health Disparities

The increasing diversity of New York State’s population brings opportunities and challenges for public health and health care providers, government agencies, and policy makers. Eliminating disparities in health and health care among racial, ethnic and other underserved populations, as well as ensuring the best possible health outcomes for all New Yorkers, is a central objective for New York State. Communities with a high concentration of minority populations are typically poorer, tend to rely on government assistance, and have a higher incidence of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), chronic diseases, and injuries. While advances in public health and biomedical technology have led to increased life expectancy and improved health for all Americans, reducing health inequalities remains a challenge, as evidence continues to show differences in health status, health care access, and quality of care by racial and ethnic populations.

Knowledge of, and data on, the racial and ethnic composition, health status, and changing health care needs of diverse populations is vital to supporting and achieving the objectives of New York State’s health care delivery system.  Using U.S. Census and American Community Survey data, the Health Equity Reports provide population density maps that depict the geographic distribution of the non-White population by census block groups within 28 Minor Civil Division (MCD) with a minority population of 40 percent or more. The reports also provide demographic snapshots highlighting education levels, poverty, race and ethnicity distribution, health insurance status and other social determinant indicators. Among the 32 health measures presented are observed and expected cancer counts for the common cancers, as well as, the proportion of these cancers diagnosed at regional/distant stage. The reports allow for comparison of all health and socio-demographic data to the County within which the MCDs reside and to New York State. The data provide metrics that potentially identify disparities and their consequences, and may serve as a resource to communities and policymakers in identifying areas to target- health related interventions. New York State Department of Health programs are utilizing the data to inform policy and program development.

(For more detailed information: Success Story for New York)



Collaboration in Obesity-Associated Cancer Report and Prevention Strategy Development

SUMMARY:  Rhode Island's adult obesity rate is currently 27 percent, up from 17 percent in 2000 and from 10 percent in 1990. Being overweight or obese can lead a large number of health problems, including as many as 13 types of cancers. Although evidences are now sufficient to link cancer risk with overweight or obesity, (1) low levels of awareness among public, public health workers, and policy makers are concerning, and (2) tackling obesity is not yet an integral part of the Rhode Island cancer prevention strategies.

 In an effort to use cancer surveillance to address this public health problem the Rhode Island Cancer Registry analyzed and summarized a 20-year incidence trend of “obesity-associated cancers.”  During 1995-2014, significant increases of kidney cancer among Rhode Island men and women, and uterus cancer among Rhode Island women were observed. Rhode Island Cancer Registry further assessed overweight/obesity-specific measures associated with postmenopausal (age 50 and older) breast cancers diagnosed in 2011. Also, preliminary results from the data analyses showed the odds of being overweight or obese were significantly higher among women with breast cancer, than state estimates from the 2011 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.

 Further, the Rhode Island Cancer Registry is in study collaboration with the Rhode Island Department of Health Comprehensive Cancer Control Program, Women’s Cancer Screening Program, and Center for Chronic Disease Management. Study findings will be used to build on the “Health Equity Zone,” community-based chronic disease prevention and management programs, and the cancer screening program. Additionally, to increase awareness of the relationship between obesity and cancer risk, communication and education strategies customized for different target audience will be developed.  The Rhode Island Cancer Control Plan is being reviewed to integrate obesity and behavior risk control with the statewide cancer prevention strategies.

 (For more detailed information: Success Story for Rhode Island)

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