Prevention in Action: May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, 400+ groups support MCED legislation and more

Published on June 2, 2022


May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month

Skin cancer is the most common cancer diagnosis in the U.S., but it is also the most preventable. An estimated one in five Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the age of 70, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation, however the risk does not stop there.

During Skin Cancer Awareness Month, the Prevent Cancer Foundation wants to remind people of all skin tones about the damage ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun does to your skin. Use broad spectrum sunscreen with a minimum 30 SPF and practice sun safety to reduce your risk of melanoma, as well as other types of skin cancer and premature aging.

Don’t forget about the risk of UV light exposure produced from sunlamps. Sunlamp products, otherwise known as indoor tanning beds and booths, emit UV radiation, a known human carcinogen. Each year in the U.S., more than 400,000 cases of skin cancer, including both melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers (NMSCs), are linked to indoor tanning.

The Foundation has long advocated for increased regulation and restrictions on the production and sale of indoor tanning equipment. On April 7, the Prevent Cancer Foundation, as a member of the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention, sent comments to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) urging the agency to finalize proposed rules on the use of sunlamp products that would change the regulations to recognize their clear hazard to public health. The Prevent Cancer Foundation strongly opposes indoor tanning for anyone, and especially for minors.

Learn more about the signs and symptoms of skin cancer and how to stay skin healthy.

400+ signatories support passage of MCED legislation

This week, we witnessed significant momentum toward passage of the Medicare Multi-Cancer Early Detection Screening Coverage Act (H.R. 1946 / S. 1873), with more than 400 organizations in communities all across the U.S. joining our support for the bill.

With this important piece of legislation, lawmakers aim to overcome the access barriers that exist for Medicare beneficiaries by creating a pathway for timely coverage of multi-cancer early detection (MCED) tests once they are approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In our letter to the committed champions of this issue, including Reps. Terri Sewell, Jodey Arrington, Raul Ruiz and Richard Hudson, and Sens. Mike Crapo, Michael Bennet, Tim Scott and Ben Cardin, we call for passage this year so that older adults will not experience delays in accessing MCED technology.

We thank the signatories from all 50 states for making their voices heard on this important issue. View our letter.

Less than two weeks away: Prevent Cancer Advocacy Workshop

Join us May 19 at 1:00 p.m. ET for “Cancer screening disparities in the LGBTQ+ community.” Registration is FREE!

The LGBTQ+ community faces unique barriers when accessing the health care system. Both preventive and essential care are affected, which can result in disparities in cancer risk and treatment. At the 2022 Advocacy Workshop, we are bringing together patient advocacy organizations and LGBTQ+ community and health experts to discuss what needs to change. As the Prevent Cancer Foundation works toward its mission of saving lives across all populations through cancer prevention and early detection, we must address cancer screening disparities in the LGBTQ+ community.

Register today!

FDA moves to prohibit menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars

On April 28, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took historic and long-overdue action in issuing proposed rules to prohibit menthol cigarettes and all flavored cigars. The Prevent Cancer Foundation supports the FDA and the Biden administration in prohibiting menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars.

Cigarette smoking is the number one risk factor for lung cancer and is linked to several other types of cancer, as well as other serious diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Menthol enhances the effects of nicotine and masks the harshness of tobacco, making cigarettes more addictive, easier for kids to begin smoking and harder for smokers to quit and disproportionally harms the health of Black Americans. Black Americans have long been targeted by the tobacco industry with predatory marketing for menthol cigarettes and have paid an enormous price in health and lives.

Regularly smoking cigars is associated with an increased risk for cancers of the lung, esophagus, larynx (voice box) and oral cavity (lip, tongue, mouth, throat). The 2021 National Youth Tobacco Survey shows that cigars are the second most popular tobacco product (after e-cigarettes) among all high school students and are especially popular among Black high school students.

By taking bold action, the FDA can protect kids from tobacco addiction, save lives and reduce health disparities. We strongly support FDA action to eliminate menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars and urge the FDA to move expeditiously to propose, finalize and implement the regulations to do so.

Want to quit? Quitting smoking at any age can significantly reduce your overall cancer risk. Learn more about how to reduce your risk of lung cancer.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also has free resources for support in quitting, including free quit coaching, a free quit plan, free educational materials and referrals to local resources. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669).

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