Public Health launches colorectal cancer campaign
Iowans will be asked to contemplate more than just their next drink when they are at their local watering hole or eatery this winter.
The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) is partnering with local bars, taverns and restaurants to bring an important message to Iowans: Get Screened…for colorectal cancer, that is.
That message, along with a trivia question, is carried on drink coasters across the state. Town and Country Tavern in Keosauqua is participating in the coaster campaign.
The question asks, “What do Vince Lombardi, Sharon Osborne, Ronald Reagan, and Pope John Paul II all have in common?” The answer is they have all had colorectal cancer.
The coasters were distributed statewide to bars, taverns, and restaurants in 21 towns, covering 19 Iowa counties beginning December 2012 and running through January 2013.
The campaign will run again in March 2013, which is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.
In a recent survey of Iowa’s county health improvement plans, a number of local health departments suggested the need to increase colon cancer screenings in their counties. Armed with that goal in mind, IDPH created the coasters to promote colorectal cancer screenings to Iowans in rural and urban areas.
“If everyone 50 years or older was screened regularly, as many as 60 percent of the deaths from colorectal cancer could be avoided,” said IDPH Director, Dr. Mariannette Miller-Meeks. “Iowa has the fifth highest percentage of late-stage colorectal cancer diagnoses. Unfortunately, late-stage colorectal cancer is less treatable. When caught in the early stages, colorectal cancer is 90 percent treatable.”