The American Cancer Society, Fight Colorectal Cancer (Fight CRC) and the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable will kick off Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month on March 8 at Smashbox Studios. The event will feature survivors, partners, experts, and celebrity guests, including actor Luke Perry, country singer Craig Campbell, and reporter and host of Accesso Total on Telemundo-52 Stephanie Himonidis also known as Chiquibaby. Guests will share their personal connections to the disease. This event is part of a coast to coast effort to increase the use of life saving screening tests and reach the national goal of regularly screening 80% of adults age 50 or older for colorectal cancer.
“I am honored to stand shoulder to shoulder with our partners to focus our energy on the common message that colorectal cancer screening saves lives,” said Dr. Richard Wender, chief cancer control officer, American Cancer Society, and chair, National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable. “Screening for colorectal cancer can not only catch it early, but actually prevent cancer by removing polyps that will turn into cancer.”
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. among men and women combined. The American Cancer Society estimates that 140,250 people in the United States will be diagnosed with the disease, and more than 50,000 people will die from it in 2018. Men and women at average risk for colorectal cancer should begin screening at the age of 50. Screening can prevent colorectal cancer through the detection and removal of precancerous growths, as well as detect cancer at an early stage, when treatment is usually less extensive and more successful. About 1 in 3 adults age 50 or older, nearly 38 million people in the US, are not getting the recommended testing.
“We are so excited to partner with the American Cancer Society and our other hosts in Los Angeles for a common focus – to save lives from this disease,” said Fight CRC President Anjee Davis. “We know sharing stories can make the call to action to get screened very personal and real. We have a community full of passionate champions, including Luke Perry and Craig Campbell, who are ready to share their strength, fight with courage, and encourage others to get screened with the goal of saving lives.”
The event will showcase an array of advocates for screening who seek to leverage their voices on this shared goal. These partners have been working together on a multi-year effort to increase colorectal cancer screening rates to 80% nationwide.
“Increases in screening have meant that nearly 4 million additional adults age 50 and older were screened in 2015 alone,” added Dr. Wender. “The American Cancer Society is so proud to be a part of this effort with our partners and know that we are collectively making a difference.”
Join the celebrities, survivors and medical experts on Facebook Live on Thursday, March 8. The event will be live broadcast on Facebook.com/MayoClinic from 1:00 – 1:20 p.m. PT, and the panel discussions will broadcast on Facebook.com/AmericanCancerSociety from 1:20 – 2:00 p.m. PT.
Colorectal Cancer Screening Coast to Coast: Driving toward Prevention is a project to increase colorectal cancer screening rates and raise awareness during the month of March. It is a collaboration by Fight CRC, the American Cancer Society, and the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable with hosting partners Mayo Clinic, Exact Sciences and UPS. Signature events include the March 8 Los Angeles event, and a Washington D.C. event on March 20 at the Rayburn Building on Capitol Hill.