Issue: Jan. 2017
A homerun for the 2016 Prevent Cancer 5k Walk/Run! No-Shave November Leaders in cancer prevention honored at 24th annual Congressional Families Luncheon
PREVENTIVE MEASURES & GENERAL WELLNESS
Indoor fitness trends The insurance coverage you deserve Create a healthier workplace
Cancer in Indian Country 2016 election: what happens now? p.
FITNESS / HEALTHY EATING
What does 2017 hold? p.
IN THE WORLD OF CANCER
Stay safe at the gym Are your kids getting the nutrition they need?
The new old boys' club
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
Research institutions where your money goes STOP CANCER BEFORE IT STARTS!â„¢
President’s Corner Dear Readers, I always relish the start of the new year. It’s an opportunity to look ahead and set new goals to reach our full potential. As you continue working on your resolutions, the Prevent Cancer Foundation® is here to help. Read on to learn about our new digital tool to help you understand your insurance coverage so you can take care of your health and get the cancer screenings that are right for you. And if you’re looking to make a positive difference in 2017, check out our advocacy priorities for the coming year and join us in the fight by becoming a part of our advocacy team. We need you now more than ever. We wish you the very best for health and happiness in 2017. Thank you for your support as we work to Stop Cancer Before It Starts!®
Carolyn Aldigé President & Founder
A homerun for the 2016 Prevent Cancer 5k Walk/Run! On Sunday, September 25, 2016, the Prevent Cancer Foundation® welcomed hundreds of enthusiastic participants for the 8th annual Prevent Cancer 5k Walk/Run and Health Fair at Nationals Park in the District of Columbia.
This year’s event was the most successful yet, raising more than $290,000 to support the Foundation’s community grants program, which enables groups across the country to provide free cancer prevention education and screenings to underserved communities.
After completing the 5k, participants had a one-of-a-kind experience at-bat in the Nationals batting cages; visited with health care partners for free flu shots, cancer screenings and health and wellness information; and toured the Prevent Cancer Super Colon®.
Some participants also honored friends and loved ones with messages on the tribute wall. Participant Lily Barsanti ran in honor of her friend Khaliq, who is battling lung cancer that has metastasized to his brain.
“Cancer is an enormous, horrible ‘what if?’” Barsanti said. “Tomorrow, next week, next year and the rest of Khaliq’s life is one big question mark. We run for all of the what-ifs.” Stay tuned for the 2017 date—we hope to see you at next year’s Prevent Cancer 5k Walk/Run and Health Fair!
“Cancer is an enormous, horrible ‘what if?’” Lily Barsanti
In 2007, the Hill family lost their father to colon cancer. Two years later, inspired to help other families avoid the same tragedy they had endured, Matthew Hill’s eight children launched No-Shave November. Since then, the campaign has grown into a movement, and the Prevent Cancer Foundation® was proud to be one of four organizations benefiting from the proceeds of No-Shave November for the second consecutive year. Here’s how it works: participants ditch their razors for the month of November and donate the cost of grooming to the cause. Many also solicit donations from family and friends. By letting their hair grow freely, participants are able to evoke conversation and talk to their loved ones about making healthy lifestyle choices to reduce cancer risk. By the end of the month, No-Shave November raised nearly $2 million. Thank you to all those who #LETITGROW in support of cancer prevention and early detection.
Leaders in cancer prevention honored at 24th annual Congressional Families Luncheon
The Prevent Cancer Foundation’s Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program held its 24th annual Action for Cancer Awareness Awards Luncheon on September 22, 2016, on Capitol Hill. The Program’s signature event honors leaders in cancer awareness and prevention, bringing together a bipartisan, bicameral group of congressional members and spouses, activists and leaders in the cancer prevention community.
Under the theme "Screening Matters," the Program honored Patricia Mica, spouse of Rep. John Mica of Florida and colon cancer survivor; Summer Sanders, Olympic champion, television host and melanoma survivor; and Amy Robach, ABC’s “Good Morning America” news anchor and breast cancer survivor, for their efforts to educate the public about cancer prevention and early detection. Mrs. Mica received the Congressional Leadership Award for her decades of leadership in the Republican spouse community and commitment to the fight against cancer through education and outreach at the local and national levels.
Ms. Sanders, awarded the Excellence in Cancer Awareness Award, lends her voice to education and awareness programs for skin cancer prevention and early detection, and uses her influence on social media to share this important message. Ms. Robach, honored with the Distinguished Service in Journalism Award, is a vocal advocate for women to get mammograms beginning at age 40, regardless of family history—as she did during a live “Good Morning America” segment, which led to her breast cancer diagnosis.
The program featured remarks from Greg Simon, Executive Director of the Cancer Moonshot Task Force, and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. Congressional Families Executive Director Lisa McGovern gave an overview of the Congressional Families Program, and Prevent Cancer Foundation President and Founder Carolyn “Bo” Aldigé spoke about the organization’s history. Investigation Discovery Channel’s Paula Zahn served as Master of Ceremonies. Twenty-five members of Congress and nearly 50 congressional and diplomatic spouses and family members attended.
Summer Sanders Olympic champion & melanoma survivor
PREVENTIVE MEASURES & GENERAL WELLNESS
“People need to be aware that their health plans may not cover every screening test available for all the types of cancers that we can detect early, even if those tests are recommended by their physicians.”
The insurance coverage you deserve Cancer screening is one of the country’s greatest public health achievements, yet insurance coverage of screening tests varies by health care plan. That’s why the Prevent Cancer Foundation® released a new digital tool that allows you to easily compare your insurance plan’s coverage of screening tests for breast, cervical, colorectal, lung and prostate cancers with other health insurance plans available in your state.
“People need to be aware that their health plans may not cover every screening test available for all the types of cancers that we can detect early, even if those tests are recommended by their physicians,” said Carolyn Aldigé, President and Founder of the Prevent Cancer Foundation®. “When patients lack access to cancer screening tests, their lives are at risk and we collectively fail to deliver on one of our best methods of prevention and early detection.” The cancer screening coverage tool is designed to help everyday consumers like you understand your insurance coverage of cancer screenings. It was built using data generated by Policy Reporter, a service that provides live policy updates from the entire U.S. health insurance landscape.
A green check-mark indicates the plan has a policy to cover a particular test, while a red “X” indicates the plan does not cover the test. A gray box indicates the plan does not have a specific policy on the test, and you should contact your plan’s member services department to find out if the test is covered. Continued on page 5
PREVENTIVE MEASURES & GENERAL WELLNESS
As an example, a closer look at the data for breast cancer shows an alarming number of plans without a policy, despite the recommendation that screening be covered:
Insurance companies are required to cover screenings recommended by the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), but may choose to cover additional screening tests as well. This situation is not unique to breast cancer screening, and underscores an inconsistency that extends to screening guidelines issued by the American Cancer Society, National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) and the USPSTF. The coverage tool features a snapshot of these organizations’ recommendations, which you should discuss with your health care provider. “We know cancer screenings of all kinds can lead to early detection of these potentially deadly diseases— but the variation between guidelines allows insurance companies to adopt cancer screening coverage policies that suit their needs and significantly impact patients’ access to prevention,” said Bernard Levin, MD, co-chair of the Prevent Cancer Foundation's Scientific Review Panel.
The e-book and coverage tool are available at
Create a healthier workplace
If you want to commit to a healthy lifestyle, a sedentary and stressful job can take a serious toll on your health. Spending hours in front of a computer screen with minimal physical activity and binging on sugary snacks to beat afternoon fatigue can also harm your body. The good news is that there are easy and cost-effective ways to create a culture of wellness in the workplace.
If you’re a business owner or executive, consider implementing some of these ideas in your office. If you’re an employee, talk to your leadership about using them to improve employee health and morale and cut down on absenteeism and health care costs.
Host healthy meetings and conferences Ditch the donut breakfasts in favor of healthy alternatives at meetings and conferences. Serve fresh fruit, cereal and yogurt for breakfast, salads for lunch and lean proteins and vegetables for dinner. Whenever you’re treating your staff to a meal or snack, choose something healthy to avoid crashes later in the day.
Implement a doctor visit policy Allow employees to take time off to visit the doctor without counting it against their vacation or sick days. This policy encourages wellness visits that could ward off potential bigger health problems down the road, and everyone wins if your employees avoid long illnesses.
Set up a wellness committee Health-conscious employees can organize healthy bake-offs, weekly workouts, educational seminars and more to improve their health as well as boost staff camaraderie and increase productivity.
An unhealthy lifestyle increases your risk of developing several types of cancer. You can help your employees and co-workers live healthier, longer lives by making these changes in the workplace.
Cancer in Indian Country
American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities experience startling disparities in cancer incidence and death rates as compared to other demographics; death rates for AI/AN men and women for lung, colorectal and esophageal cancers are significantly higher than those of Caucasians, and liver cancer rates are nearly twice that of white men and women.
The health care challenges faced by this community stem from a variety of issues, including the difficulty of accessing health care in rural settings, the disparities in health care based on income and the unique cultural challenges of cancer prevention in AI/AN communities. To address these disparities, the Prevent Cancer Foundation® has served AI/AN communities through grants that support powwows, traditional food guides and other health education and screening projects that address cancer prevention in culturallyrelevant ways. We have also made efforts to include the AI/AN communities in key clinical trials and prevention discussions.
“Like other Americans, lung and colorectal cancers are the leading cancers among American Indians and Alaska Natives, and in many places cancer screenings are hard to access. This means many American Indians and Alaska Natives are at increased risk of cancer, and cancer may be diagnosed at later stages,” said Carolyn Aldigé, President and Founder of the Prevent Cancer Foundation®. “We need to support healthy choices and cancer screening and treatment in Indian Country.”
The Prevent Cancer Foundation® is committed to continuing our work with AI/AN communities to prevent cancer and save lives across all populations. Join us at the Dialogue for Action® on Cancer Screening and Prevention for an American Indian/Alaska Native meeting to share experiences with cancer screening and prevention programs in Indian Country. The Dialogue will take place April 19-21, 2017, in McLean, Virginia. You can register online at www.dialogueforaction.org.
2016 election: what happens now?
The votes are in, and there’s a huge change coming to the executive branch. With President Trump in the Oval Office and continued Republican majorities in the Senate and House of Representatives, we are taking a look at how the new administration will influence health care.
Affordable Care Act (ACA)
There are almost certainly big changes coming to the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, in the weeks and months ahead. The Senate has already laid the groundwork to repeal the ACA during the budget process with just 51 votes (rather than the 60 usually required), and the House will support repeal as well. While the law has faced challenges, the ACA has extended health insurance to 20 million people who will lose coverage if it is repealed. The ACA has also guaranteed coverage for preventive measures and preexisting conditions, such as cancer. It is difficult to predict what, exactly, could replace the ACA. Currently, no replacement plan has been proposed, and the House and Senate are discussing a transition time of twoto four-years. Speaker Paul Ryan, as well as the Trump administration, have each said the replacement plan will cover as many people as the Affordable Care Act—but usual suggestions, such as health savings accounts or selling insurance across state lines, could not make up the coverage gap that would result from repeal.
Medical research and funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have had bipartisan support, so we are hopeful they will continue to receive significant federal funding. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which houses the Prevention and Public Health Fund and other prevention programs established under the ACA, is under a greater threat. Congress needs to maintain funding for the CDC to ensure that continued breakthroughs in prevention, such as vaccines and behavioral health education, reach the general public. We will be vigilant to ensure that critical funding for the NIH, FDA and CDC is maintained when a budget is released this spring.
We will keep you up to date on these changes and how your health care could be affected, and we pledge to continue working hard on these issues. Join our advocacy team to add your voice and together we can Stop Cancer Before It Starts!®
What does 2017 hold?
The new year also ushered in a new Congress—which means the Prevent Cancer Foundation® has work to do. With the 115th Congress seated, we are ready to hit the ground running to fight for policies that will help Stop Cancer Before It Starts!®
Access to care
We are dedicated to making sure everyone has access to preventive care, such as screenings, with no cost-sharing or barriers to access. In 2017, this will include protecting health care access as much as possible, advocating to maintain the Prevention and Public Health Fund, ensuring Medicaid in all states covers preventive care, and keeping the requirement to cover all preventive screenings with no cost-sharing.
Fighting for funding
We need sustained support for medical research, health care coverage and health education programs—so we will be fighting for increased funding for the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and National Institutes of Health (NIH). We will also be working to protect and strengthen the Prevention and Public Health Fund, a community grant program that pays for health education and preventive car in underserved communities.
Think About the Link® Stopping virally-induced cancers takes educating the public and implementing good policy. The Foundation supports the Viral Hepatitis Testing Act, which would create an education and testing program for hepatitis B and C, and could be introduced in 2017. We also want to ensure state Medicaid systems cover hepatitis C medication for all. And in order to prevent the many cancers caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), we will be asking states to mandate the HPV vaccine for students.
This is a full slate of issues, and it will keep us busy in 2017. But we can't accomplish any of our goals without our advocacy team. If you can join us, visit www.preventcancer.org/advocacy and sign up for our advocacy team today.
Stay safe at the gym
These days there are more exercise programs on the market than ever. With dozens of new programs to try, it is important to stay safe and listen to your body during every workout; pushing yourself too hard can lead to injury. Here are some tips for staying safe during your workout:
1. Warm-up Your warm-up and stretch are as important as your workout. Get your body ready to go with 5-10 minutes of low-level aerobic movement, followed by some stationary stretching. This will help you get the most out of your workout. You should also cool down after you finish exercising by steadily reducing your pace and doing a brief stretch. 2. Start slow If your body is not used to rigorous exercise, start slowly and work up to increased activity. If you are new to exercising, talk to your doctor before attempting moderate- to high-impact workouts. 3. Avoid injury Including a mix of different activities is the safest way to exercise. Training too hard on the same body parts can cause stress fractures, sore joints and damaged ligaments and tendons. Swimming is a great workout for reducing your risk for these injuries.
4. Rest Rest days are equally important for your body to recover. Without them, you become more Physical activity is susceptible to a suppressed immune system, important for improper sleep and injury. If you’re new to preventing many exercising, take a rest day every three days. types of cancer, but If you’re more experienced, take a rest day you have to be smart. once a week. If you’re eager to move on Listen to your body, stay these days, go for a slow walk or take a hydrated and find the light yoga class. exercise regimen that works best for you.
Are your kids getting the nutrition they need?
Getting your kids to eat healthy is a challenge for any parent. With obesity rates continuing to rise, teaching your children about the importance of a healthy, balanced diet is critical to their long-term health. Here are some helpful ideas to help your kids get the nutrition they need:
Include your kids in meal planning and cooking.
Stock up on healthy snacks.
Sit down for family dinners as often as possible.
Pick out a healthy recipe you can make together. Let them choose the ingredients and give them safe tasks in the kitchen to help make the meal. They will be more interested in eating something they created.
If salty, greasy chips and sugary treats aren’t there, they’re not an option. Keep cut-up fruits and vegetables, nuts, pretzels or trail mix on hand, especially when you’re on the go. If kids are hungry, they will eat what’s available.
With sports practices, band rehearsals and other activities, fitting in family meals can be a challenge. Busy schedules may tempt you into making foods you know your kids will eat or allowing them to buy cheap foods to go. Family dinners help your kids eat a balanced meal because you control what’s on the table.
In the United States, an unhealthy diet and lifestyle is the number one cause of preventable death, and diet-related diseases can develop as early as childhood. Obesity is second only to tobacco as the leading cause of cancer. Be a healthy role model for your children and you will set them up for a lifetime of good health.
these projects could not be funded. IN THE WORLD OF CANCER
The new old boys’ club
John Watson was 51 years old when he felt a lump in his neck.
What he thought might be a sinus infection turned out to be much worse—John was diagnosed with stage 4 oropharyngeal cancer, a cancer that can develop in the middle part of your throat behind the mouth, including the base of the tongue, side and back walls of the throat, and the tonsils. Like 75 percent of oropharyngeal cancers, John’s cancer was caused by a human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. While John was being treated for his cancer with chemotherapy and radiation, he and his family stayed at a lodging facility for cancer patients and their caregivers. During their stay, they met two other men around the same age who were also battling throat cancer caused by HPV.
John and his new friends are part of a growing number of men being diagnosed with oropharyngeal cancer. It is three to four times as common in men as in women, and new cases of oropharyngeal cancers have surpassed those of cervical cancer in women since 2010.
Along with oropharyngeal cancer, HPV causes at least five other types of cancer. Fortunately, for 10 years there has been a safe and effective vaccine that can protect against the virus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends it for all girls and boys ages 11-12 and the number of doses required for maximum protection has just been reduced from three to two. John’s stepson, who was 20 at the time of John’s diagnosis, had already been vaccinated when he was 11. At the time, John and his wife didn’t really understand why—they had their son vaccinated as a matter of course. Now, they know his vaccination could be lifesaving.
You can help change things for the next generation. Talk to your children’s health care providers about getting your kids vaccinated today.
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
Research institutions where your money goes
Thanks to your support and commitment to cancer prevention and early detection, countless lives have been saved. The Prevent Cancer Foundation® is the only U.S. nonprofit solely committed to these two driving forces, and that’s what makes us unique. It’s been that way since 1985, when the Foundation was founded. The Prevent Cancer Foundation® ventured into an area that was being overlooked by most, and for more than three decades has funded novel and groundbreaking science in cancer prevention and early detection. We have awarded grants to early-career scientists from more than 150 of the leading academic medical centers nationwide.
With your help, the Foundation has funded studies in the areas of:
• tobacco cessation and other behavioral health • advanced technologies for early detection • health disparities and health equity, also known • biomarkers of early cancer as “social determinants of cancer” • vaccines that prevent cancer • chemoprevention, both naturally occurring • genetic links to cancer compounds and pharmaceutical agents • environmental toxins that cause cancer • dietary interventions to reduce obesity (second • effective ways to communicate cancer only to tobacco use as a leading cause of cancer) prevention messaging to motivate people and the links between inflammation and cancer to take action Without you, we could not continue to fund projects like these. The steps we took starting in 1985 have already had an impact, and tomorrow offers even more hope. But we need your continued support to create new and sustained resources for research grants and fellowships.
This year, give the gift of lifesaving research.
Donate at www.preventcancer.org/donate UPCOMING EVENTS AND NEWS March 11: Annual Spring Gala
April 19-21: Dialogue for Action® & Laurels Luncheon
October 2-3: Quantitative Imaging Workshop
News for 2017
TO SUBSCRIBE, CONTACT: Prevent Cancer Foundation 1600 Duke Street, Suite 500, Alexandria, VA 22314 Toll-Free: (800) 227-2732 Main: (703) 836-4412 Email: pcf@PreventCancer.org Visit: PreventCancer.org Cancer PreventionWorks is published by the Prevent Cancer Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the prevention and early detection of cancer. All contributions are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law. The Prevent Cancer Foundation is a member of the Combined Federal Campaign (#11074).
1600 Duke Street, Suite 500, Alexandria, VA 22314
The insurance coverage you deserve
The new old boys' club
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