Beginning in 1980, the American Cancer Society first issued formal guidelines for colorectal cancer screening in average risk adults. Since then, the Society has periodically updated its colorectal cancer guidelines, and other organizations also have issued recommendations for colorectal cancer screening, most notably the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force and the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer (USMSTF; comprised of the American College of Gastroenterology, the American Gastroenterological Association and the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy). Since 1997, the organizational guidelines for average risk adults have grown increasingly similar, and now largely represent a broad consensus on the value, options, and methods for periodic screening for colorectal cancer.
In response to a recommendation from the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable Quality Assurance Committee, the American Cancer Society, the U.S. Multi-Society Task Force, and the American College of Radiology (ACR) agreed to collaborate on an update of each organization’s guidelines. It was agreed that the guidelines would be developed through a process of collective deliberation between experts from the three organizations and that the completed guideline would then be reviewed and approved by each organization.