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Finding State Statistics on Colon and Rectal Cancer

Finding State Statistics on Colon and Rectal Cancer

by Andi Dwyer, Director of Health Promotion DATA: IT’S EASIER TO FIND THAN YOU THINK One of our advocates recently called asking for information about the number of cancers diagnosed in her region of Central Illinois. She requested this information so she could write and accurately illustrate to her legislators the burden of colorectal cancer in her local area. Being a data geek, I was thrilled to get this question. But after responding to her, I realized that many people don’t realize how easy it is to access this information and then use it to advocate. Data can seem intimidating and scary. But in truth, accessing trustworthy information, reviewing the data and finding

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Depression and Cancer: More than a Side Effect?

This post was written by Curtis Pesmen, survivor and author of My Cancer Year. With the heightened awareness of depression this week, we hope colorectal cancer patients facing depression read this to understand the psycho-social impact of cancer and seek help if needed. On a personal note, our condolences to Curtis and his wife who had a friendship with Robin Williams and his wife. Read Curt’s tribute to him posted in Esquire this week.    For all the advances and new diagnostics in cancer therapy, a stark fact remains: There is no standard CT scan for depression. (At least not yet.) And depression often follows cancer diagnoses. This is but one reason why it remains difficult

FDA approves first non-invasive DNA test for colorectal cancer

Big news in the colorectal cancer prevention and screening community yesterday! In a never-before-seen move, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) jointly proposed Cologuard as a new option for colorectal cancer screening. What is Cologuard? Cologuard, produced by Exact Sciences, is a non-invasive (not requiring insertion of instruments into the body), stool-based (you test your poo) DNA test designed to analyze the presence of blood and certain DNA mutations in a patient’s stool sample that can indicate cancer and/or precancerous polyps. Cells of DNA are released into the stool continuously as part of the digestive process. There are already at-home screening options

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The 2015 Call-on Congress Scholarship Fund

In 2013, Fight Colorectal Cancer introduced something new; a Call-on Congress Scholarship Fund. Thanks to survivor and longtime advocate Liz Dennis, five new warriors joined us on the Hill that year. The passion that was shown by our newbies tugged on the hearts of everyone, and the necessity to continue this program was felt by all. With the generosity of two couples, Chad and Sheila Schrack and Eric and Rose Hausmann, funds from their hometown fundraisers were added to the scholarship program. Because of these efforts, in 2014 Fight Colorectal Cancer was able to double our scholarship recipients, and 10 new warriors joined us on the Hill.  “I was accompanied

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Advocacy Update – August 2014

Advocates, July was our second-busiest month so far this year. March is hard to beat on the busy scale! With the August recess now upon us, we worked hard both on and off the Hill this July to let elected officials know how important it is that they support our legislative goals. Although everyone takes a break from the Hill in August, things won’t be slowing down for us! GET LOUD, GET LOCAL! THE AUGUST RECESS CHALLENGE We’re challenging our advocates to have 31 congressional meetings in 31 days! Each year in August, your elected officials pack their DC bags and head home to their districts. This is the perfect opportunity

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ADVOCATE SPOTLIGHT: Debra’s Thoughts on ASCO

by Debra Merritt, advocate MY JOURNEY WITH CANCER On November 14, 2008 my journey with cancer began with my husband Cliff’s stage IV colon cancer diagnosis. We had lived an amazing life, married as students in college at the age of 20, and were just four days away from our 30th anniversary and six days away from his 51st birthday. We had two beautiful daughters in college. Cliff began to experience severe abdominal cramps which led to a colonoscopy and to the diagnosis a few days later. As soon as Cliff was diagnosed, he made it his mission to encourage everyone we knew to get a colonoscopy. He made sure that they were informed about the importance

One Voice Against Cancer: Maria’s Perspective

by Maria Williams, advocate I look over my list of meetings on my schedule for the day with OVAC, One Voice Against Cancer, while listening to our morning “pep” talk.  My meetings are set at just the right intervals, no running back and forth between the house and senate sides of the Hill. The names on the schedule are ones I recognize from meetings over that past couple of years, this brings me a sense of comfort and relief, hoping these folks will remember me. I know I will be meeting with legislative staff from previous trips. I’m feeling more confident than I have in the past, this being my

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August Recess Challenge – 31 Meetings in 31 Days

Advocacy doesn’t just happen on the Hill in March. It’s something you can do from home year-round—especially during the August recess! Your members of Congress are home for the entire month of August and meeting with them is easier than you may think! Follow these steps to help us have 31 advocate meetings in 31 days and reach 100 co-sponsors of H.R. 1070 and 20 co-sponsors of S. 2348. What You Need To Get Started… Ready…  Find out who your representative and senators are here: https://www.govtrack.us/congress/members . Set… Contact your members of Congress to schedule a meeting. Members of Congress have local offices in their districts, so you won’t have to

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On Target for Hope – Recap from One Million Strong in Minnesota

by Danielle Burgess, Dir. of Communications Even a week after the One Million Strong event in Minnesota, I find myself getting goosebumps as the photos from my phone slowly upload to the Flickr account. Memories of children and their parents lighting up when country star and Fight CRC National Spokesman Craig Campbell walks into their hotel room to sing a few songs and offer autographs. Memories of watching our “super volunteers” Pam, Ed & Patti roll up their sleeves and make the burden of a jam-packed, two-day event seem light, and the chaos that accompanies any on-site activity seem calm. Memories of meeting new friends at Colon Cancer Coalition and seeing

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CREATING A VISION – A CURRENT OF HOPE

“Few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events. It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.” ― Robert F. Kennedy CREATING RIPPLES OF HOPE by Anjee Davis,  President I think about our mission

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