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Characteristics of the Patient-Provider Relationship and Impact on Colorectal Cancer Screening

March 2024
Full report

Patients of physicians with a racially and ethnically diverse patient base are more likely to be up to date with appropriate screenings for colorectal cancer. Physicians' experience working with and understanding of patients who do not necessarily resemble themselves is important for addressing inequities in health care. 

Racial/ethnic disparities are a concerning trend in rising colorectal cancer (CRC) incidence among people younger than age 50. An estimated 68 percent of CRC could be avoided with routine screening, yet disparities in screening mean that Black individuals are diagnosed later in illness and are more likely to die from the disease. 

Many factors influence the likelihood that a patient and physician will share the same race or ethnicity (i.e., be race concordant). This analysis examined the relationship between race concordance and CRC screening by race/ethnicity group and showed how its impact varied by race/ethnicity group.


  • Overview of CRC Race/Ethnicity Disparities
  • Methodology
  • Characteristics of Patients and Physicians
  • Impact of Shared Race/Ethnicity on CRC Screening
  • Discussion and Implications

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