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Cancer Screen Week is Dec 7 - 11

More than one-third of people in the U.S. have missed routine screenings this year.

During Cancer Screen Week December 7-11, the American Cancer Society and partners Genentech, Rally Health, and Stand Up To Cancer aim to increase awareness around the potentially lifesaving benefits of getting screened for certain cancers.  

Cancer Screen Week is particularly important this year, as more than one-third of people living in the U.S. have missed routine cancer screenings due to COVID-19, potentially leading to many cancers being undetected. 

This year alone, there were nearly 1 million fewer mammograms, colorectal cancer screenings, and cervical cancer screenings, compared to previous years. The COVID-19 pandemic has worsened potential social determinants of health by creating additional challenges, such as unemployment, potential delays for health appointments, or being at higher risk of COVID-19 infection or complications.  

We are calling on healthcare providers, employers, insurers, community members and others to join us in encouraging everyone to talk to their doctor about which screenings are recommended for them.  

A toolkit including a fact sheet, posters, reminder card, and social media posts, has been created for all audiences and includes ideas on how to use the materials within your network. You can choose to use the full toolkit or just certain materials, which can be downloaded and accessed here.

Learn more at CancerScreenWeek.org.  

  • Study: More than 12% of people newly diagnosed with lung cancer never smoked cigarettes

    Smoking cigarettes is the biggest risk factor for lung cancer and causes about 80% of deaths from the disease. But people who don’t smoke can develop lung cancer, too. A new study found that out of 100 people in the U.S. who were recently diagnosed with lung cancer, about 12 of them (12%) had never smoked cigarettes. The study was co-led by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Cancer Society (ACS). The results were published in a research letter in JAMA Oncology.

    While other studies have shown increases in the number of lung cancer patients who had never smoked cigarettes in both the U.S and United Kingdom (UK), this study offers greater insight into the rate at which people are diagnosed with lung cancer. Instead of pulling data from local hospitals as smaller studies have done, this study used a large sample of over 129,000 cases of lung cancer based on data from cancer registries in 7 states.

    The data was collected from 2011, when the CDC National Program of Cancer Registries began obtaining cigarette smoking history from patient medical records, to 2016.

    New insight into “never smokers” and “ever smokers”

    The study offers a more detailed look at recently diagnosed lung cancer patients based on their smoking history.

    In “never smokers” (people with a recent diagnosis of lung cancer who never smoked), the researchers found a higher percentage of:

    • Women across all age groups, races/ethnicities, and most types of lung cancer (about 16%) in comparison to men (about 10%).
    • People ages 20 to 49, including women (about 28%) and men (about 19%).
    • People with the adenocarcinoma type of non-small cell lung cancer, compared with other types of lung cancer. This was consistent with previous studies.

    In “ever smokers” (people with a recent diagnosis of lung cancer who currently smoke or used to smoke), the researchers found a higher percentage of:

    • Men (90%) than women (84%). About half of men and women ages 20 to 64 were current smokers.
    • Current smokers who are Black compared to whites or Hispanics. 

    More research on lung cancer in never smokers needed

    Future cancer research focused on people who have never smoked may help researchers improve their understanding about the effect of genetic and other risk factors besides smoking on lung cancer. Risk factors for lung cancer not related to smoking include exposure to secondhand smoke, radon, air pollution, and chemicals and materials at work, such as asbestos.

    Smoking still causes most lung cancers

    The large percentage of ever smokers who were recently diagnosed reinforces “the need to strengthen and increase smoking cessation,” according to ACS researchers Stacey Fedewa, PhD, and Ahmedin Jemal, DVM, PhD, who were co-authors of the study. Previous ACS research has shown that this can be done with state and federal tobacco control policies that promote smoking cessation and with more doctors advising their patients to quit.

    A person’s risk is affected by the number of packs of cigarettes they smoke a day and the number of years they smoke them. People who actively smoke or used to smoke should talk to their doctor about their risk of lung cancer and getting screened with a low-dose CT (LDCT) scan. 

    This article first appeared on cancer.org.


  • CvC golf auction raises more than $200,000

    The one-of-a-kind Coaches vs Cancer “Member for A Day” auction that concluded on Nov. 27 raised  $216,905 to support ACS. 

    The event gave fans and supporters a chance to bid on an opportunity to golf with their favorite NCAA college basketball coaches and sportscasters. More than 100 coaches and celebrities donated rounds of golf. 

    The top bid of $22,100 went to baseball Hall of Famer Ken Griffey, Jr., who offered an outing at Michael Jordan’s new course, Grove XXIII, in Florida. North Carolina basketball head coach Roy Williams led the way for the college coaches, donating a round of golf at Pinehurst #2, which sold for $17,600. 

    Some of the biggest names in sports stepped up to support us, including: 

    • Lon Kruger, University of Oklahoma
    • Rick Pitino, Iona
    • Fran McCaffery, University of Iowa
    • Tubby Smith, High Point University
    • Brad Underwood, University of Illinois
    • Jay Bilas, ESPN
    • Steve Smith, NBA All-Star

    All golf rounds will be played in 2021, and winners can coordinate with the host members on their preferred date. Travel and accommodations are not included. MGM Resorts International is sponsoring the event.

  • Thanks for your support on #GivingTuesday - donations are always welcome!

    ​On #GivingTuesday, the world focused on giving, and we had an opportunity to showcase the urgent needs of cancer patients and ACS in a climate that has been significantly impacted by COVID-19. 

    Thanks to the generous support of anonymous matching gift donors, all donations made to ACS on #GivingTuesday will be matched dollar-for-dollar, up to $75,000.

    We need your help beyond #Giving Tuesday! Spread the word on your personal social media channels encouraging friends and family to choose ACS this giving season.

    Watch for shareable posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages. Or, use one of the following sample social media post - and be sure to tag ACS.

    • COVID-19 has made fighting cancer even harder. Help save the fight against cancer by donating to ACS at: cancer.org/donate

    Thank you!

  • Relay For Life of Father Ryan High School soars despite COVID

    In the midst of a pandemic, the Relay For Life of Father Ryan High School in Nashville, TN, did not disappoint. Participants continued to raise critical funds for our mission and even met safely in person. 

    The Relay committee followed ACS safety guidelines to plan and host an in-person, student-led event this year. Co-chairs Julia Eidt and Matthew Dilucchio, both seniors, helped fellow students run the event with support and guidance from their co-advisors Michelle Mast and Jonathan McGee, both faculty at the school. 

    On Saturday, Oct. 31, top fundraising students were allowed to attend the event. Many students achieved this milestone by participating in our Peer-to-Peer Fall Fundraising Challenge. The event ranked #2 in the challenge, with 139 winners. Each winner raised at least $250 and received a long-sleeved, hooded t-shirt. There was a cap on the number of attendees to keep everyone safe. 

    On the day of the event, the committee met at 8 a.m., with every student sharing why they Relay. The students saw this as a special moment to share what motivated them to raise funds for the Society. Although this year looked different due to social distancing, it was a special bonding moment during a challenging year. 

    With their hard work for this event alone, it is clear why the Relay For Life of Father Ryan High School was the Nationwide Pat Flynn Spirit of Relay Winner in 2019. 

    Early in 2020 (before COVID-19), the Relay For Life of Father Ryan High School made a goal to raise $179,000. With their determination and Relay spirit, they were able to raise more than $162,000. The Relay ranked #3 in the nation in high school events. and #5 nationwide for all campus events. 

    We would also like to acknowledge the hard work of two other high-performing high school events in the nation. Both were able to take advantage of their full fundraising season without many COVID-19 implications:

    • The New Jersey Union County Vocational Technical School took the #1 spot for high schools and ranks #2 for all campus events, having raised more than $199,000. UCVTC pivoted their event to attend our Relay USA. 
    • The #2 spot for high schools went to Kansas Blue Valley Youth for raising more than $173,000, and they ranked #4 for all campus events – hosting an in-person event prior to the impact of COVID-19 on March 6. 

  • ACS mourns the passing of longtime volunteer Linda Mowad

    ​Linda (Ziter) Mowad, RN, 78, of Prospect, CT, died at home on Thanksgiving morning, with her family by her side.

    Linda was the director of the Cancer Information Service for New England at the Yale Comprehensive Cancer Center for 35 years. She was a past chair of the former American Cancer Society New England Board of Directors, and in 1998 she was awarded the St. George National Award from the Society. 

    The award-winning Cancer Information Service, a network for the National Cancer Institute, served the public by interpreting and explaining cancer-related information and research findings in a clear and understandable way. The main office for the New England Region was located at Yale Comprehensive Cancer Center, where Linda oversaw programs, research, and community outreach activities.

    A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Dec. 1 in Waterbury, CT, and burial followed in Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Watertown, CT.

    To honor Linda's memory, donations in her name may be made to the American Cancer Society or Our Lady of Lebanon Church, 8 East Mountain Rd., Waterbury, CT 06706. The family welcomes condolence, words of comfort, or a personal memory with the Mowad family on Linda's tribute page.


  • Order your ACS holiday cards now!

    ​It's holiday card time! Visit our updated greeting card store and order your 2020 holiday cards today.

    We have a variety of American Cancer Society exclusive designs, and a lot of photo card options to choose from. We offer Christmas cards, Hanukkah cards, and everyday thank you cards. In addition, we continue to offer exclusive designs from Tony Bennett, whose partnership we've enjoyed for 27 years now.

    As always, 100% of the net proceeds benefit the American Cancer Society. So, send some holiday cheer and help support our fight against cancer.


  • ACS receives $5M grant from the Woodruff Foundation

    Largest gift in our 20-year history with this Atlanta-based institution - thanks to the work of many staffers!

    The American Cancer Society is thrilled to share the news of a major investment from the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation: a $5 million grant in support of our work. The foundation is giving $1 million toward the renovation of our Atlanta Hope Lodge and $4 million in support of our health equity research. 

    The health equity funding will support our ongoing efforts led by our Atlanta-based Population, Data, and Implementation teams. Together, these teams work together to better understand where health disparities exist, contributing factors, and how to deploy evidence-based strategies that aim to reduce these disparities.

    The Woodruff Foundation is an Atlanta-based funding institution that has long supported ACS. The Foundation is focused on improving quality of life in Georgia by investing in health, education, economic opportunity, and community vitality. This is the largest gift we have received from the organization over the course of our 20-year relationship. 

    This grant is special, not only because it supports our mission-critical work at a very challenging time, but because it truly exemplifies how we “win together.” Gary identified the Woodruff Foundation as a key prospect for our 2020 Cancer Research Funding Challenge based on both his relationship with the funder and the organization’s focus on Georgia-based work. The GHQ Philanthropy team then developed the strategy for approaching the foundation. They collaborated with the Southeast Region team, the Office of the Chief Medical and Scientific Officer, and Finance to develop a targeted proposal based on the foundation’s areas of interest. The result was a huge win for ACS! 

    Congratulations to everyone involved in this effort: Gary, Ruth Ann Dailey, Alpa Patel, Ahmedin Jemal, Laura Makaroff, Brant Woodward, Jessica Palmer, Chris Thomas, Crystal Federspiel, Allison Nichols, Lisa Bishop, Amanda Miles, Katherine King, Emily Thomas, Bill Cance, Jennifer Greenwald, Kerri Gober, Monique Compito, Shacquel Woodhouse, Bill Phelps, Joya Harris, Zach Morris, and Joe Cotter!


  • Dec. 2 is the deadline for submitting nominations for three prestigious volunteer awards

    This year has been incredibly challenging for the American Cancer Society due to the impact of COVID-19. With very little notice, most community events had to pivot to virtual experiences, and you had to quickly find new ways to raise critical funds for the American Cancer Society.

    Considering so many challenges, you persevered and stepped up in remarkable ways to give support to the American Cancer Society and our mission. If you volunteer alongside an outstanding peer, speak with your staff partner to determine if they meet the requirements for one of our volunteer awards. 

    Nominations are now being accepted for the Volunteer Staff Partnership Award, Volunteer Leadership Award, and St. George National Award. All nominations must be submitted by 3 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Dec. 2.

    Each award has specific requirements and honors a different type of volunteer, so take a few minutes to review the details of each award to determine the best fit for recognizing your peer. As reminder, please work with your staff partner as appropriate to nominate a fellow volunteer for an award. 

    • Volunteer Staff Partnership: This award recognizes a volunteer and staff team that models a successful partnership to positively impact the mission of the Society. These volunteer and staff teams may operate side-by-side in the community, collaborate on projects virtually, or work together across the globe. One partnership will be chosen from each Region and Global Headquarters for a total of seven winners. 
    • Volunteer Leadership Award: This award is presented to volunteers who have served as a volunteer leader for enterprise-wide programs, initiatives, or Board level committees or task forces, other than as chair of the American Cancer Society Board of Directors and to others who have provided long and distinguished service to the Society at the enterprise-wide level.
       
    • St. George National Award: This award is given to outstanding volunteers throughout all Regions who have made significant contributions to the American Cancer Society's strategic goals. Each Region including Puerto Rico is asked to submit up to two nominees.

    If you have any questions, please contact Michelle Brady, volunteer care manager.


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