Open Accessibility Menu

Gunnison Valley Health Launches Direct Access Colonoscopy Program

Direct access screening colonoscopies are now available at Gunnison Valley Health. The new initiative is an effort by the health system to increase the accessibility of this lifesaving cancer screening. The procedure is available for individuals with no major symptoms or medical conditions.

Gunnison Valley Health general surgeon, Dr. Augustine Lee, said the new program will streamline the process for healthy patients and reduce wait times for the procedure.

“For patients eligible for direct access screening colonoscopies, there is no requirement that they schedule an office consultation prior to their procedure,” Lee said. “Screening colonoscopies are recommended for everyone over 45 years old and can prevent colon cancer by detecting and removing precancerous polyps before they turn to cancer. We want to make it as easy as possible for every person in the community to access this critical cancer screening.”

There are two ways for individuals to take advantage of the direct access screening colonoscopies; a referral from their primary care provider or through a self-referral on the Gunnison Valley Health website. The self-referral form includes health screening questions to determine if the person is truly eligible for a direct access screening colonoscopy.

Once a provider referral or self-referral is received, it will be processed and a representative from the general surgery team will contact the patient within five business days to schedule their procedure.

Gunnison Valley Health CEO, Jason Amrich, hopes the new initiative will improve patient experience and, ultimately, save lives.

“I applaud the work done by Dr. Lee and the entire team in our general surgery department,” Amrich said. “This new initiative aligns us with industry standards and, more importantly, streamlines the process for everyone in the Gunnison Valley to access a screening that can prevent cancer in otherwise healthy adults. Every day I am proud to be surrounded by professionals who are always looking for ways to improve services and keep the community healthy.”

You can learn more about direct access screening colonoscopies by visiting