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Fort Worth City Council votes to ban smoking in bars

On Dec. 12, the City Council in Fort Worth, Texas, voted 8-1 to expand its smoke-free ordinance to include a ban on smoking (including e-cigarettes) in bars and bingo parlors. This is a big win for ACS CAN, which led the effort to educate the community and the City Council on the harmful effects of secondhand smoke.

"Because of the hard work of ACS CAN staff and volunteers, Fort Worth joins more than 80 cities across the state that have implementing comprehensive smoke-free ordinances," said Cam Scott, Texas ACS CAN government relations director. Fort Worth was the only major city in Texas without a comprehensive smoke-free ordinance.

In addition, the new law prohibits retail smoke shops within 300 feet of schools, universities, and hospitals. It still allows smoking in outdoor dining areas and patios of public places, provided the area where smoking is permitted is at least 20 feet from entrances and exits, and private clubs.

The ordinance will take effect on March 12, and ACS CAN will continue to work in Fort Worth to ensure the new ordinance is fully implemented and enforced. 

  • 21st annual meeting of NCCRT includes strategy session to address the increase in incidence of early onset colorectal cancers

    Last week, more than 200 leaders and experts invested in advancing colorectal cancer screening met in Bethesda, MD, at the 21st annual meeting of the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable (NCCRT). 

    The event, which closed Dec. 8, is the annual meeting of the NCCRT membership, a collaboration of more than 100 medical, advocacy, government, and corporate organizations focused on delivering quality colorectal cancer screening for those for whom screening is appropriate. Meeting attendees conduct strategic planning to advance shared NCCRT goals, while also highlighting the latest knowledge in colorectal cancer screening practice, research, and policy.

    The themes of urgency and success were constant throughout the two and a half days, with added focus on determining how to ramp up our efforts to reach 80% of adults ages 50 or older screened regularly for colorectal cancer. The meeting featured presentations by nationally known experts, thought leaders, and decision makers on colorectal cancer screening policy and delivery, with ample opportunity to network and learn from fellow attendees. Additionally, pre-conference activity included an all-day strategy session to address the alarming increase in incidence of early onset colorectal cancers, a growing concern for public health leaders. Here is the agenda.

    Other meeting highlights included the opening keynote from Rich Wender, MD, our chief cancer control officer and NCCRT chair, in which he reflected on our progress and challenges in meeting the 80% by 2018 goal; an inspiring call to infuse urgency into our efforts from Erica Sutton, MD, FACS, founder/president, Surgery on Sunday Louisville, Inc.; and a moving reflection on the role that survivors can play in advocacy efforts from Julienne Gede Edwards, stage 1V colorectal cancer survivor and grassroots advocacy manager, Fight Colorectal Cancer.  Plus, in the great tradition of the 80% by 2018 effort, NCCRT members sang the latest colorectal cancer song, "Eighty," to the tune of "Hey Jude."

    The meeting was made possible by the generous support of 22 sponsors who contributed more than $75,350 in sponsorships, surpassing NCCRT's goal of raising $60,000. An additional $20,000 was raised to support the early onset strategy meeting, bringing the total raised to $95,350 overall.

    Find additional highlights on Twitter using the hashtag #NCCRT2017 and visit to learn more.

    PHOTO: Pictured in the smaller image, from left are Mark B. Pochapin, MD, director, Division of Gastroenterology, Sholtz-Leeds Professor of Gastroenterology, and professor of medicine at NYU Langone Medical Center; David Yavin, PhD, president, North America, ‎Medial EarlySign; Gloria D. Coronado, PhD, Mitch Greenlick Endowed Senior Investigator in Health Disparities Research, Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research, NCCRT Steering Committee; Karen E. Kim, MD, professor of medicine, dean of Faculty Affairs, associate director, Cancer Disparities, the University of Chicago Medicine Comprehensive Cancer Center; Jason A. Dominitz, MD, MHS, FASGE, AGAF National Program director for Gastroenterology Department of Veterans Affairs, acting GI Section Chief, VA Puget Sound Health Care System, professor of medicine, Division of Gastroenterology, University of Washington School of Medicine.

  • NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar honored at CvC game

    Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the NBA's all-time leading scorer and a leukemia survivor, was honored during half-time during the Dec. 9 Illinois vs UNLV NCAA college basketball game in Las Vegas that benefited Coaches vs. Cancer. 

    Abdul-Jabbar, who played 20 seasons in the National Basketball Association for the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers, retired in 1989. In 2008, he was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), a cancer of the blood and bone marrow.

    That experience turned him into a supporter of Coaches vs. Cancer, as well as an ACS CAN advocate for more research dollars. In May, he delivered the keynote speech at the Coaches vs. Cancer Wisconsin Gala our most successful Coaches vs. Cancer gala.

    Before Saturday's game, the former NBA star talked to CBS Sports about his work in the fight against cancer. When asked about his association with Coaches vs. Cancer, he said: "Coaches vs. Cancer is a natural fit because I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for cancer research. It's keeping me alive. Fifteen to 20 years ago, my diagnosis would have been a death sentence."

    He added: "It's a good fight, I'm glad I'm involved. I'm glad I got the good sense to participate. I'm happy with what's going on. It's neat because you can see the affect. My doctor said, 'Hey man, all my patients used to die. Two or three years I'd treat them and then they'd die. Now, I lose contact with them because they stay alive and keep living their lives and move on.' "

    Abdul-Jabbar said anyone can contribute to the fight against cancer by donating their time through the American Cancer Society, perhaps driving a patient to treatment. "That kind of help is meaningful. It's not cash, but it has tremendous value," he said.  In a tweet he wrote: "If you're fighting cancer please keep hope and please help the @AmericanCancer" @kaj33."

    ​For more than 25 years, Coaches vs. Cancer, a partnership between the National Association of Basketball Coaches, and the American Cancer Society, has helped lead the fight against cancer, raising more than $110 million for the ACS.

    Media coverage 

    CBS SportsReutersSports Illustrated, and the podcast conducted interviews with Abdul-Jabbar during the week of Dec. 4. The Associated Press also interviewed him, and a USA Today podcast will run this week.

    PHOTOS: Pictured with Abdul-Jabbar in the top left photo are young UNLV fans, whose grandmother is a cancer survivor.

  • We hit our $1 million goal on #GivingTuesday!

    This year, the American Cancer Society set an ambitious goal to raise $1 million dollars on #GivingTuesday. For perspective, that's more than double the amount the Society raised last year. 

    We are beyond thrilled to announce that, thanks in huge part to our generous match partner, Mastercard, we exceeded our goal and raised more than $1 million* in just 24 hours!

    This would not have been possible without the support of our amazing staff, volunteers, and supporters. Thank you for sharing our messaging on your social channels and thank you to those who donated.

    Our partnership with Mastercard, who generously agreed to match donations on #GivingTuesday – dollar for dollar – up to $250,000, gave us a break through message that really resonated with our audience.

    We are looking forward to working with Mastercard again on #GivingTuesday in 2018!


    *Source: Siebel reporting

  • Have you taken the updated Sharing Our Story workshop & training yet?

    Our new brand strategy and creative campaign – Attacking Cancer From Every Angle – makes it easier for us to talk about who we are and what we do. And, our Sharing Our Story workshop and training has been updated to align with the new brand vision, providing staff and volunteers the opportunity to hone our response to the question: "What does the American Cancer Society do?"

    Below are the dates of upcoming Sharing Our Story workshops. To register, visit the Volunteer Learning Center and click 'Sharing Our Story' from the 'Additional Learning Quick Links' section on the right-hand side of the home page. 

    • Tues., Jan. 9 11 - 11:30 p.m. ET

    • Sat., Jan. 20, 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET

    • Thurs., Jan. 25, 6 - 7:30 p.m. ET

    • Sat., Feb. 3, 2 - 3:30 p.m. ET

    • Wed., Feb. 7, 8 - 9:30 p.m. ET

    • Mon., Feb. 12, 9 - 10:30 p.m. ET

    • Tues., Feb. 20, 8:30 - 10 p.m. ET

    • Thurs., March 1, 6 - 7:30 p.m. ET

    • Sat., March 10, noon - 1:30 p.m. ET

    • Tues., March 13, 8 - 9:30 p.m. ET

    • Wed., March 21, 10 - 11:30 p.m. ET

    • Mon., March 26, 7 - 8:30 p.m. ET

    What to expect: The new Sharing Our Story Workshop is a 90-minute, interactive webinar, where you'll have the chance to practice your response with a small group of peers. This practice is essential! The new ACS story is not just about using innovative words, but is about each of us affirming our personal connection to the Society's mission and seeing ourselves in the fulfillment of that mission. It's also about sharing our pride in the Society, in our brand, in our lifesaving impact, and in our collective efforts to attack cancer from every angle.

  • Three major companies share success toward 80% by 2018

    ​More than 260 participants tuned into our Nov. 30 80% by 2018 webinar – Employer Strategies for Success!  AmerenAT&T, and Progressive Insurance all presented compelling stories and showed how their evidence-based efforts are increasing colorectal cancer screening rates across the board at their companies. The recorded webinar and slide deck are now available in the Resource Center on the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable website

    Ameren has been working on a colorectal cancer screening initiative for several years now. They have a well-planned, comprehensive approach getting them closer and closer to 80% screened and have been recognized by the St. Louis Business Journal. AT&T is just getting started but has already seen increases in screening through their multi-faceted communication plan, including the use of internal company celebrities. Progressive Insurance wasn't seeing the results they hoped for so they created a low-cost but innovative idea to promote screening and saw impressive success.  We also heard two personal stories from our presenters and how this work has directly impacted them and their families.  

    The webinar began with a brief introduction to steps employers can take to increase screening rates at their company, and also discussed how the language of the 80% by 2018 initiative is transitioning as we look into 2018 and beyond. 

    Survey respondents gave positive feedback about the webinar:

    • 91% agreed the webinar delivered the information expected
    • 98% agreed the subject matter was presented effectively
    • 100% agreed the presenters were knowledgeable
    • 84% believed they gained new knowledge applicable to their work
    • 86% planned to apply what they learned from the webinar
    • 75% of age-eligible responders plan to get screened in the next six months                   

    If you have any questions or would like the roster of attendees to see if any of your accounts joined, please email us at

  • National Lung Cancer Roundtable brings together patients, organizations, and clinicians at its first annual meeting

    The National Lung Cancer Roundtable held its inaugural meeting on December 11-12, in Bethesda, MD, the first major meeting for the new nationwide coalition of organizations committed to addressing the challenges of moving lung cancer screening into the mainstream. This year, 222,500 people in the U.S. will be diagnosed with lung cancer.

    The Roundtable launched in March 2017 and currently includes roughly 65 organizational members, among them clinical professionals, researchers, lung cancer advocates and patients, healthcare organizations and cancer centers, insurers, and government agencies.

    The first annual meeting featured keynote speaker Chris Draft (pictured here), a former NFL player who launched Team Draft in 2011 with his wife Keasha, a nonsmoker who died of lung cancer. The agenda included updates on the work so far, a workplan for 2018, and breakout sessions on lung cancer screening implementation, provider engagement and outreach, tobacco cessation in the context of lung cancer screening, shared decision-making, and optimal therapy.

    "Whatever one's connection to lung cancer, whether involved in research, clinical medicine, public health, or advocacy, no one has a greater understanding of the impact of that work than the patient," said "K" (Karen) Latzka, lung cancer survivor. "Within the patient community are passionate, intelligent, and caring individuals just waiting to take part in this important work, and I'm honored to be at the Roundtable as their representative."

    "By working together, rather than independently, we will make greater and faster progress in reducing the burden of this terrible disease," said Ella Kazerooni, MD, professor of radiology at the University of Michigan and chair of the National Lung Cancer Roundtable. 

    "It is an honor to give the keynote speech at the American Cancer Society's first National Lung Cancer Roundtable conference," said Draft. "My wife, Keasha, was diagnosed with lung cancer in December 2010, and unfortunately passed in December 2011. From that time, I have witnessed tremendous innovations in lung cancer with respect to awareness, detection, treatment, research and survivorship. We are on the cusp of drastically changing the survival rate in lung cancer, so I believe it a perfect time to convene the thought leaders in lung cancer and figure out how we can make a larger impact together moving forward."

    Deena Cook, patient advocate with the Lung Cancer Alliance, noted that "to successfully implement a lifesaving lung cancer screening program, we must cut through the stigma" surrounding the disease.

    The members of the Steering Committee are:

    • Ella A. Kazerooni, MD, MS (chair), University of Michigan

    • Douglas E. Wood, MD (vice chair), University of Washington

    • Robert A. Smith, PHD (PI), American Cancer Society

    • Joseph Chin, MD, MS, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

    • V. Paul Doria-Rose, DVM, PhD, National Cancer Institute

    • Laurie Fenton Ambrose, Lung Cancer Alliance

    • Thomas P. Houston, MD, American Academy of Family Physicians

    • Jane Kim, MD, MPH, Department of Veterans Affairs

    • Bryan Loy, MD, MBA, Humana

    • Peter Mazzone, MD, MPH, Cleveland Clinic

    • Jamie S. Ostroff, PHD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

    • Gerard A. Silvestri, MD, MS, Medical University of South Carolina

    • Joelle Thirsk Fathi, DNP, RN, ARNP, Washington State Nurses Association

    Check out participants' Twitter posts by searching #NLCRT2017.

    The Roundtable is funded by an unrestricted educational grant from AstraZeneca and in-kind support from the American Cancer Society. For more information, contact Lauren Rosenthal, MPH, director of the NLCRT at and Robert A. Smith, PhD., vce president of cancer screening at the American Cancer Society, at

  • Our first ever Sports & Experiences Auction is now open!

    ​The American Cancer Society today launched its first Sports & Experiences Auction, and it will run through Friday, Dec. 22. Check it out here! 

    More than 60 items will be auctioned off on eBay's charitable platform, including a NFL Draft Experience. We're promoting this on Ebay and social media, and via media outlets, as well. The website address is

    The goal is to create an opportunity to highlight our dedicated partners and recognize them for their participation in the fight against cancer, while raising significant new revenue for the Society's mission.

    Some of the most exciting auction items include:

    • NFL Draft Experience
    • NFL Pro Bowl Experience
    • French Open Experience (Opening Day)
    • Las Vegas Super Bowl Weekend Experience (VIP with George Strait)
    • Cleveland Indians Ceremonial First Pitch Experience (May 24)
    • Golf @ Olympia Fields with Chip Beck (Ryder Cup member)
    • St Louis Blues experience (tickets and ride on Olympia – the Zamboni)
    • In studio sit in during JT The Brick (FOX sports radio) in Los Angeles
    • 2 tickets to the Falcons/Panthers game on Dec. 31 in the Field Suite
    • Atlanta Braves Spring Training Experience (batting practice and more)
    • USA Track & Field VIP Experience at the 2018 Millrose Games 

    PLEASE NOTE: Minimum bids are set for some items, and some items requiring fulfillment before the auction end date will have earlier bidding deadlines. 

  • Study finds even newer, low-dose hormonal birth control raises breast cancer risk slightly

    A study of Danish women finds that newer forms of contraceptives, including birth control pills and hormone-releasing IUDs, increase the risk of breast cancer about as much as older forms of hormonal contraceptives – about 20%. 

    "A 20 percent increase of a very small number is still a very small number,"  Mia Gaudet, PhD, our strategic director, Breast and Gynecologic Cancer Research, told NPR. The risk contributed by hormonal contraception, she says, is similar to the extra breast cancer risk contributed by physical inactivity, excessive weight gain in adulthood, or drinking an average of one or more alcoholic drinks per day.

    "The absolute increase in risk [found in the study] is 13 per 100,000 women overall, but only 2 per 100,000 women younger than 35 years of age," writes epidemiologist David Hunter, of the University of Oxford, in an editorial accompanying the study published Dec. 6 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

    Studies have long shown that hormonal birth control slightly raises breast cancer risk. But newer contraceptives contain less of the hormone drugs estradiol and progestin, and it was hoped that they would not increase breast cancer risk as much.

    Mia said the findings don’t necessarily mean that women should stop using hormonal contraceptives. She says women need to balance their immediate needs with long-term risk. They should also take into consideration that older studies have linked hormonal contraceptives to a lower risk of getting ovarian, endometrial, and colorectal cancers later in life.Women may want to have a discussion about the benefits and risks of hormonal contraceptives with their doctor.


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