'We can. I can.' this World Cancer Day
Contributed by Andrew Spiegel, Executive Director, Global Colon Cancer Association.
World Cancer Day unites the world’s population in the fight against cancer. It aims to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness and educating about the disease, pressing governments and individuals across the world to take action.
Each year, 8.2 million people die from cancer worldwide, out of which 4 million die prematurely (aged 30 to 69 years). Over 600,000 or about 8% of those deaths will be from colorectal (Bowel) cancer. More than 1.2 million people are diagnosed with colorectal cancer annually and while that makes it the third most common cancer, it remains arguably the most preventable major cancer through screening.
Despite the proven cost effectiveness of screening and the availability of proven screening tools, by 2020 the worldwide incidence rate of colorectal cancer is expected to increase by 33.5%. The economic burden of the disease is staggering, reported to be in excess of $33,000,000,000 annually.
Time to spread the word
World Cancer Day is the ideal opportunity to spread the word and raise the profile of cancer in people’s minds and in the world’s media. The Global Colon Cancer Association, and its passionate patient organization members, demand access to proven screening tools to help end the needless suffering of millions and their families. We want governments, payors, regulators, the healthcare community and all stakeholders to pay attention to this deadly but preventable disease. Awareness of the disease, its reach, its ability to be prevented and its treatability if diagnosed early are the keys to changing the global problem of colon cancer.
World Cancer Day 2016-2018 will explore how everyone – as a collective or as individuals – can do their part to reduce the global burden of cancer. Just as cancer affects everyone in different ways, all people have the power to take action to reduce the impact that cancer has on individuals, families and communities.
World Cancer Day is a chance to reflect on what you can do, make a pledge and take action. Whatever you choose to do, ‘We can. I can.’ make a difference in the fight against cancer.