Cancer sucks.

There, I said it. I have lost count how many friends, family members, professional colleagues, and acquaintances have been diagnosed with cancer, undergone treatments, “survived,” run the races, worn the awareness bracelets and tees, and unfortunately, too many who died from the disease, complications, or even the treatments that were supposed to be saving them. I have friends who have buried parents, siblings, and spouses, worried over their genes, or progressed through the numbered and lettered stages as their cancer grew, morphed, or spread. I know many of you could say the same. You have been impacted directly or indirectly. And it sucks. It’s a terrible beast.

Cancer is non-discriminating. It doesn’t care if there is an ice storm or sub-zero temperatures. Cancer doesn’t care if the government is shut down. It is far-reaching, persistent, and non-partisan, and we need strong, informed leaders advocating for and creating change.

Photo by Ross Findon on Unsplash

The University of Virginia School of Medicine Continuing Medical Education and School of Continuing Nursing Education are pleased to partner with Next Generation Choices Foundation, commonly known as Less Cancer, for the Cancer Prevention Caucus and National Cancer Prevention Workshop next week on Capitol Hill.

Less Cancer promotes a paradigm shift from cancer awareness and treatment to risk reduction and prevention. Less Cancer’s goal is simple: fewer cancer incidences or…less cancer. Did you know that more than 90% of cancers are preventable? At least 90% (!!) of cancers DO NOT HAVE TO OCCUR. Yet, most cancer conversations are about curing, treating, fighting, and slowing the growth.

Less Cancer was instrumental in the designation of Cancer Prevention Days in Virginia, New Hampshire, Michigan, and New York as well as National Cancer Prevention Day (February 4th), a resolution first introduced in the U.S. Congress in 2012 by Rep. Steve Israel of New York.

The National Cancer Prevention Workshop, held in conjunction with the Congress Cancer Caucus the previous day, gathers legislators, healthcare professionals, researchers, students, parents, teachers, lawyers, and many others to learn about and discuss cancer prevention through risk reduction at the micro and macro level and promote wellness through lifestyle modification and healthy behaviors. This year’s main topics are inequities, disparities, and access; environmental and chemical toxins; screening behaviors and guidelines; and community wellness initiatives. The full program agenda and additional resources can be found HERE.

Join us in our efforts to connect science and policy for action!

Ways to join: in person, live stream both events on Less Cancer’s Facebook page, or online as an enduring activity.

Location: Rayburn House Office Building, 45 Independence Ave SW, Washington DC (Capitol Hill map)

Caucus: February 5, 2019 from 10:00 — 11:00 am in the Gold Room

Workshop: February 6, 2019 from 10:00 am — 3:00 pm in Rooms 2043–2044

Promoting a shift in the cancer paradigm was originally published in Less Cancer Journal on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.