Chris Hansen, ACS CAN President

A Blog From the ACS CAN President

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World Cancer Day 2017: “We Can End Cervical Cancer Deaths”

February 3, 2017

Tomorrow is World Cancer Day. It’s a day when the world unites to reduce the impact that cancer has on individuals, families and communities by raising awareness and pressing governments across the world to take action against the epidemic. World Cancer Day is organized by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC). UICC works with its partners, including the American Cancer Society, to unite the cancer community to reduce the global burden of cancer, promote greater equity and integrate cancer control into the world health and development agenda.  

This year’s theme, “We can. I can.,” calls upon everyone worldwide to do their part in the fight against cancer. We’re committed to doing just that at ACS CAN. As the nation’s leading advocacy organization working to save more lives from cancer, we’ve helped make cancer a top national priority. We’re also dedicated to elevating cancer on the global health agenda.

For this reason, ACS CAN is launching a new global campaign aimed at eliminating death from cervical cancer.  Cervical cancer is preventable through proven, cost-effective HPV vaccinations, screenings and preventive treatments of pre-cancerous lesions. We believe cervical cancer screenings should be an integral part of women’s and adolescents’ health programs around the world.

In fact, over the last 30 years, the cervical cancer death rate in the U.S. has been cut in half – largely because of increased screenings, including the Pap test. Yet, globally, cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women and the most common cancer in 38 low- and middle-income countries.

In 2012, an estimated 527,000 women were diagnosed with cervical cancer worldwide, and 265,700 died from the disease. Of those deaths, approximately 90 percent lived in low- and middle-income countries of sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and Latin America.

We will be calling on Congress to direct U.S. global health funding to support a campaign to eliminate death from cervical cancer. Those funds would be used to increase vaccinations, screenings and treatment services for girls and women beginning in high-prevalence, lower-income countries. Women’s lives can be saved through these actions.

ACS CAN is committed to working with our partners to foster the political commitment and resources to make these practical, life-saving programs possible.