Our West Virginia Program to Increase Colorectal Cancer Screening (WV PICCS) partner clinics participated in national Dress in Blue Day on Friday, March 3. Dress in Blue Day began as a way to present a united front in the battle against the disease during Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Partner clinic staff donned their favorite shade a blue in order to raise awareness of colorectal cancer screening with their patients.
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in West Virginia. While colorectal cancer is a significant problem, it does not have to be. If men and women aged 50 years and older tested regularly for colorectal cancer, we could avoid at least 60% of deaths from this disease. Colorectal cancer does not always have symptoms so it is important to test for it even if you feel healthy.
WV PICCS is a CDC-funded program directed through the WVU Cancer Institute Cancer Prevention and Control. The purpose is to increase colorectal cancer screening rates in persons aged 50-75 in partner primary care clinics across West Virginia. WV PICCS works with each partner clinic to assess their current screening practices. With this information, program staff collaborate with the clinics’ administrators, providers, and staff to implement evidence-based interventions to increase and sustain colorectal cancer screening rates. WV PICCS works with each partner clinic for a 2-year period with the goal to increase colorectal cancer screening rates to the national goal of 80% or at least 10% above their baseline. The program currently partners with 24 primary care clinics in 18 counties.
Thanks to all of our partner clinics for showing their support!
Many thanks to the WVU women’s soccer team and their fans who came out to watch the Mountaineers beat Oklahoma 5-1 during the “pink” game at Dick Dlesk Stadium in Morgantown on October 8. The game was an opportunity for both the team and fans to join the WVU Cancer Institute and WVU Medicine to raise breast cancer awareness and support the fight against breast cancer. Cancer Institute Director Rich Goldberg, representatives of the Betty Puskar Breast Care Center and the Bonnie Wells Wilson Mobile Mammography Program (Bonnie’s Bus), and assistant women’s soccer coach Marisa Kanela were called to the field for halftime recognition and an announcement that the Mountaineers raised nearly $9,000 for the Cancer Institute’s Betty Puskar Breast Care Center during the team’s annual spring fundraiser. Additionally, Mountaineer fans donated more than $1,300 in exchange for official pink Mountaineer T-shirts. Their donations will support the Breast Cancer Program Enhancement Fund at the Cancer Institute.
Linda Vona-Davis, Ph.D., director of the Biomedical Master of Science in Health Sciences Program at West Virginia University, was surprised and delighted to see 65 of her colleagues at her recent presentation. Before the standing-room-only crowd, she discussed her latest research into how adipose-derived stem cells, which originate in fat, influence the activity of breast cancer cells.