Entries in uspstf (2)


Mammogram Rate Did Not Decline After Controversial Recommendation

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Despite a 2009 recommendation from the United States Preventative Services Task Force that women between the ages of 40 and 49 not undergo routine mammogram breast screenings, mammogram rates actually rose among women in that age group.

The recommendation from the USPSTF was a controversial one, because some experts argued that delayed screening would increase breast cancer deaths.

A recent study in the journal Cancer found that doctors and female patients have largely ignored the recommendation from the USPSTF. Researchers studied data from nearly 28,000 women and found that 53.6 percent of women had a mammogram in 2011, up from 51.9 percent in 2008. Within the population of 40 to 49 year old women, 47.5 percent had a mammogram in 2011, up from 46.1 percent in 2008.

The study did not determine why mammogram rates rose after the recommendation, but did point out that a number of prominent advocacy groups continued to recommend screenings for women between the age of 40 and 49 despite the USPSTF recommendation.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Hepatitis C Screenings for Baby Boomers Receive Lukewarm Support

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Earlier this year, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued new recommendations for Baby Boomers: whether at risk or not, everyone should get tested for Hepatitis C.

Now, an influential advisory board is offering only half-hearted support for the protocol.  In a draft opinion issued Tuesday, the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) advises doctors to “consider offering screening” for Hepatitis C for adults born between 1945 and 1965.

The recommendation is labeled “Grade C,” which the USPSTF’s website deems “only a small benefit” for people without prior symptoms.  It did extend a “Grade B” recommendation for screenings high-risk adults, such as those with a history with intravenous drugs.

The USPSTF is made up of outside experts appointed by the government, and is widely considered more influential than the CDC.  As a result of the low-grade recommendation, insurance carriers might not cover the one-time hepatitis screenings.

The National Virus Hepatitis Roundtable immediately called for a revision to the USPSTF’s draft opinion.  “Doctors look to USPSTF to guide clinical practice and A and B recommendations get covered without cost-sharing to patients,” said Executive Director Martha Saly.  “This is not going to be the case with a C recommendation and will result in many people not being tested.”

According to the CDC, Baby Boomers born between 1945 and 1965 are five times more likely to be infected with Hepatitis C than the average adult.  Infected adults can live with the virus for decades before showing symptoms, leaving many people unaware they are living with the liver disease.

Copywright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio