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ATTN: City Desk, Medical, Health, Science, Life Editors
NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release
March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month
Patient advocates push for a national colorectal cancer screening policy
Montreal, March 3, 2004—March begins the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada’s annual nationwide
effort to educate the public that colorectal cancer (CRC) is preventable, treatable and beatable.
Colorectal cancer—cancer of the colon or rectum—is the second leading cause of cancer deaths overall in
men and women. The disease surpasses both breast and prostate cancer in mortality, and is second only to
lung cancer in numbers of cancer deaths.
An almost equal number of men and women are diagnosed each year. Even though it is preventable, an
estimated 18,000 Canadians were diagnosed with CRC last year, and sadly an estimated 8,300 died from the
disease.
“Regular screening is the best way to prevent CRC, and we recommend that all Canadians be screened
starting at age 50,” states Barry Stein, President of the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada. “People with
a family history of the disease should be screened earlier.”
“Canada does not have a national CRC screening policy and our provincial governments have not acted on
this unmet medical need. Notwithstanding the fact that the National Committee on Colorectal Cancer
Screening, the Canadian Association of Gastroenterology, and the Quebec Association of Gastroenterology
have issued screening recommendations, our Governments have failed to implement a viable program that
would save lives.”
“We continue to advocate a National screening policy and urge provincial government bodies to adopt a
screening policy immediately. Early detection can mean the difference between becoming a cancer statistic
and preventing the disease altogether.”
The Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase
awareness and education of the disease, support patients and their families, and advocate for a national
screening policy and improve access to treatment. For more information, please visit www.ccac-accc.ca or call
the toll-free info line at 1-888-318-9442.
You can link to the eAdvocacy campaign calling for a National Colorectal Cancer Screening Policy in Canada
at www.advocacyonline.net/ccac/email.htm.
—30—
Contact:
Barry Stein, President CCAC; T: (514) 875-2100 Ext. 259; E: [email protected]
Cynthia Lane, Oroalliance, T: (514) 697-9111; E: [email protected]
60 St. Clair Avenue. East, Ste. 204, Toronto, Ontario M4T 1N5
Tel: (416) 920-4333 Fax: (416) 920-3004 Toll Free: 1-888-318-9442 www.ccac-accc.ca