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2/26/2013 1:03:00 PM
Staff Health Reminder: Colorectal Cancer - Get Screened and Spread the Word about the Cancer You Can Prevent

Information provided by Oregon Health Authority/Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Prevention Program

Educators have a powerful role to play in helping Oregon prevent colorectal cancer, the second most deadly cancer. For your own health, get screened. Then, for the sake of your students and communities, start talking about it.

If you’re a principal or school administrator, let your teachers and staff know how important screening is to their health. Screening can prevent this cancer or catch it early when it’s highly treatable. Encourage employees to get screened and then to talk about it with others.

Be a Healthy Role Model
By encouraging employees to get screened, you contribute to a culture of heath for staff, schools and districts. That leads to better employee morale and health, and less absenteeism, and helps attract and retain healthy employees. Just as important, educators who get screened for colorectal cancer, and encourage others to do the same, serve as healthy role models.

Research shows that people like you who share their stories and encourage others to get screened are one of the most powerful motivators to get other people screened. You help make it normal and demystify the process. So if you’ve been screened for colorectal cancer, please talk about your experience and encourage other people in your life to get screened, too.

Who Should Get Screened
Everyone ages 50 to 75 (45 for African Americans) should get screened, but fewer than 6 in 10 Oregonians do. Compare that number to breast and cervical cancer screening rates (about 8 out of 10 Oregonian women) and you can see the gap.

You can help reduce this gap. You also can help relieve the physical, emotional, and financial toll -- pain, suffering, health care costs, missed days of work, and more -- this cancer takes on patients, their loved ones, and our communities. All it takes is a conversation.

Share a little about your experience. For example, many people say “The prep was the worst part,” “It’s over before you know it” or “Nothing beats the peace of mind from knowing you may have prevented this cancer.” Consider sharing:
  • Everyone over the age of 50 (45 for African Americans) should be screened even if they don’t have a family history of cancer or symptoms.
  • Screening lets your doctor find and remove polyps before they turn cancerous, or catch it early when it’s highly treatable.
  • Most insurance plans cover 100 percent of the cost of screening with no co-pays or deductibles. Even without insurance, there are low-cost, reliable options.
  • Talk to your doctor about the option that’s right for you. Make and keep your appointment to be screened.

Join the Campaign in Oregon
The Oregon Health Authority is working to increase screening rates among Oregonians from approximately 60 percent to 80 percent by 2014.

Be a part of the campaign by sharing your story on our Facebook page. Learn more about colorectal cancer and screening, and share your story on the “Your Stories” page of this website: www.TheCancerYouCanPrevent.org.

Thank you for your support. Your story could save a life.
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