Background: Factors associated with attending screening for colorectal cancer with faecal occult blood testing was studied.
Methods: Sixty-eight per cent of 34,144 subjects participated in the primary screening and/or rescreening in a randomized screening study. The mortality and causes of death in the two groups were studied. A sample of the subjects received a questionnaire, in which they were asked about their reaction to the invitation. A statistical sample was called for a telephone interview.
Results: The mortality among the non-attenders was higher than among the attenders (p < 0.001), which might reflect a higher morbidity among the non-attenders. The mortality was equal in the test and control groups. There was no difference among the attenders and non-attenders who had a full or 50% pension. Among immigrants the attitude to screening was less positive among those born in 1918 but was the same as that of the whole group among those born in 1929. Significantly fewer persons among the non-attenders than among the attenders could be reached for a telephone interview (p < 0.001).
Conclusion: There is a possibility that the compliance can be increased. The non-attenders' attitude to screening was more negative than that of the attenders.