In support of National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, the Cancer Center of Santa Barbara will host free colon cancer screenings. The first session will be on Monday, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Cottage Hospital, Rooms C & D, off the Castillo Street entrance. The center will host a second screening on Sunday, April 6, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, 802 E. Montecito St. wants to raise widespread awareness of this disease, which, experts say, can be preventable.

Colon cancer is the third leading cancer killer in Santa Barbara County.

A healthcare provider will be available at each location to hand out information about colon cancer screenings as well as free take-home fecal immunochemical tests to those age 50 and over. The FIT test can be performed at home and, once completed, returned to the center in the envelope provided.  Cancer Center staff will then inform individuals of the test results.

According to reports, colon cancer is the third leading cancer killer in Santa Barbara County. Experts say more than 60% of Americans over the age of 50 have never been screened for colon cancer. Screening can find colon cancer early, when most treatable, or help prevent it altogether.

For more information about this event or the Cancer Center of Santa Barbara’s colon cancer early detection and prevention program, please call Lisa Hashbarger, the center’s health education coordinator, at 805-898-2204.