This National Cancer Prevention Month, let’s help reverse some of the pandemic’s toll

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on health behaviors that can increase cancer risk — for example, alcohol and tobacco use have risen, and in some populations physical activity has declined.

February is National Cancer Prevention Month. We can use this month to promote health behaviors that reduce cancer risk and prevent disease.

In Wisconsin, we can dramatically reduce cancer risk by helping our patients and communities:

  • decrease tobacco use and exposure.
  • decrease excessive alcohol consumption.
  • increase physical activity and healthy eating.
  • increase protection from sun and UV exposure.
  • increase HPV and Hepatitis B vaccination.
  • reduce exposure to radon in homes, schools, and other buildings.

The Wisconsin Cancer Collaborative offers a wide range of tools to help support your cancer prevention work. For example:

How-to sheets for patients: These health literacy tools answer common patient questions about cancer prevention, screening eligibility, and insurance coverage. (Available in Spanish and English.)

Alcohol and cancer tools: Alcohol use can cause at least seven types of cancer. Wisconsin has the highest rates of heavy drinking and binge drinking in the nation. Use these resources to raise awareness about the alcohol-and-cancer connection.

HPV vaccine and cancer tools: The HPV vaccine can prevent at least six types of cancer. Unfortunately most Wisconsin youth are not getting vaccinated. Use these tools to enhance your efforts to promote HPV vaccination.

Sun safety social media graphics: As the weather warms, more people will be spending time outside. Use these social media graphics and sample messages to promote sun safety and reduce skin cancer risk.

County Cancer Data Dashboard: What are the most common cancer risk factors in your county? Explore cancer risk factors, screening rates, and other county-level data in our interactive data dashboard.

Resource Center: See our growing list of internal and external resources in our searchable online Resource Center. (To submit a resource for consideration, please email Alex Faust.)

Wisconsin Cancer Plan 2020-2030: Make sure your cancer prevention work is backed by the latest recommendations. Our state’s Cancer Plan offers best practices, action steps, and data measures to help you create, implement, and assess evidence-based risk reduction programs.

Personal health behaviors are strongly influenced by the environments in which we live, work, learn, and play. Together, we can reduce cancer risk and prevent cancer death by ensuring that every community has the resources they need to support lasting health improvements for everyone.

Helping people reduce their risk of cancer is an important part of the Wisconsin Cancer Plan 2020-2030. See how this connects to the WI Cancer Plan

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