In our first two years of service to the Anal Cancer communities, we have worked to improve patient outcomes for people living with anal cancer and prevent others from HPV-related cancer diagnosis. We would like to share with you how your support has helped us to fulfill our mission.
INCREASING ACCESS TO THE HPV VACCINE
The HPV Vaccine is our first line of defense against HPV-associated malignancies. In order to curb HPV-related cancer rates we must increase access to the vaccine for both genders. To improve access to the vaccine, we have:
- Testified before the FDA in support of expanding the Gardasil vaccine's approval for anal cancer prevention for males and females. The FDA approved Gardasil for the prevention of anal cancer in December 2010.
- Formed and led a coalition of 12 organizations to submit multiple joint testimonies to the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices to promote HPV vaccination in males. In October 2011, the CDC voted in favor of routine HPV vaccination for males.
IMPROVING SCREENING PROTOCOLS AND PREVENTATIVE CARE
Anal cancer can be treatable when caught early. It is imperative that we arm clinicians with the appropriate resources to treat and diagnose the disease earlier. In order to improve screening protocols and ensure the implementation of life-saving diagnostic techniques, we have:
- Awarded a $50,000 grant to create the first anal cancer medical society. The International Anal Neoplasia Society will bring scientists and clinicians together to discuss prevention, treatment, and novel therapies in forums dedicated exclusively to anal precancer and cancer. The society will also provide training to nurses and doctors, thereby broadening the discussion and knowledge of anal cancer within the medical field.
- Led a coalition of health advocacy groups to urge the National Institutes of Health to test anal cancer screening and treatment methods by funding the first anal precancer randomized controlled trial.
- Participated in four scientific conferences on chronic illness and their causes: HPV 2010, IPV 2011, and Partnering for Cures 2010 and 2011.
RAISING AWARENESS & DESTIGMATIZING ANAL CANCER
The strong stigma associated with the HPV and anal cancer prevents equitable discussion in both the general public and the medical community. To raise awareness about the disease, we have:
- Created a website with knowledge and resources for people with anal cancer.
- Offered a partnering service that matches people with anal cancer with others who have or had the disease.
- Co-sponsored and served as panelist at pioneering anal cancer forum, The Cancer That Dare Not Speak Its Name: A Community Discussion on Anal Cancer.
- Increased knowledge and awareness of HPV and Anal Cancer by participating in athletic events around the globe, including: Ironman Zurich 2012, ING NYC Marathon 2011, More Magazine Women’s Half Marathon (2011 & 2012), Just Walk UK, Danskin Women’s Triathalon Series, Long Beach Marathon, Boston Chilly Half Marathon, Shanghai International Marathon, Rock’n'Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon, and Showtime’s Walk of Shameless. To see details of these competitions, visit our Walks & Runs page.
- Been featured in publications including the New York Times, NBC’s Blog Health Goes Strong, the Tribeca Trib, American Social Health Association: HPV News, ACRIA: Achieve, and the Lake City Reporter.
This is only the beginning of our journey. It is our personal mission to build on this momentum and move forward to improve the quality of life for people living with anal cancer and reduce the prevalence of HPV.