It wasn't until recently that I learned of World Cancer Day, which took place Monday, February 4th.
World Cancer Day is a global initiative to raise awareness about cancer, and address the many misconceptions a cancer diagnosis is associated with. Globally, the goal is to address the following four myths:
Cancer is just a health issue:
Truth: Actually, cancer has many implications besides health consequences. It concerns many facets of the world including social, economic, development, and human rights concerns.
Cancer is a disease of the wealthy, elderly, and developed countries:
Truth: Cancer does not discriminate, and all socio-economic groups are affected. In fact, developing countries are encountering disproportionate levels of disease burden as compared to developed countries.
Cancer is a death sentence:
Truth: With the many advances in cancer prevention and treatment, we now have the ability to treat cancer more efficiently.
Cancer is my fate:
Truth: Not a completely true statement. We can now prevent many cancers that were, in the past, unable to be prevented.
Want to be engaged with the goals set forth in the World Cancer Declaration? Sign the declaration.
The goal, which is outlined in the World Cancer Declaration, is that by 2020, more education and awareness will be available in the following areas:
Effective cancer control programs
Reduced risk factors such as tobacco use, alcohol consumption, and obesity
Universal vaccination programs
A better informed public
Improved diagnosis methods
Universally available pain control
Improved training for medical staff
Better survival rates for cancer patients
To get involved, check out the World Cancer Day website and look for an event in your area by clicking on the Map of Events page. Letís all join together and educate everyone despite the many barriers we may face!