March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, and the message from Regional Cancer Care—Northwest is “Cover Your Butt” by taking a simple test that could save your life.
Regional Cancer Care, the Northern Cancer Fund of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Foundation, and RBC Royal Bank have teamed up again with a “cheeky” campaign to promote colorectal cancer screening among men and women age 50 and over in Northwestern Ontario.
“The campaign this year encourages men and women age 50 and over to talk to their health-care provider about Fecal Occult Blood Tests (FOBT), which is a simple, take-home test that screens for colorectal cancer,” said Alison McMullen, director of Prevention and Screening, Regional Cancer Care.
“With high rates of colorectal cancer in Northwestern Ontario, it is crucial for people to know that when found early, colorectal cancer can be 90 percent curable,” she stressed.
The campaign, created by Generator Design and Advertising, presents common concerns or misconceptions about colorectal cancer screening in a humorous way.
Throughout March, “Cover Your Butt” will be seen on billboards, in print and radio ads, on the back of buses, and online at www.coveryourbutt.ca
“Our goal is simple: we want to save lives,” said Ken Bittle, chair of the Health Sciences Foundation’s board of directors.
“When people donate to the Northern Cancer Fund, we strengthen the fight against cancer by translating those gifts into education geared at encouraging people to get screened.”
When Donelda Sagowiz agreed to be involved with this campaign’s predecessor, the “Bottom Line,” she never knew that just two years later she would be diagnosed with colorectal cancer herself.
“The decision to get screened basically saved my life since the cancer was detected at an early stage,” she remarked.
Dr. Heather McLean, family physician and primary care lead for Regional Cancer Care, said stories like Sagowiz’s should motivate people to talk with their health-care provider about colorectal cancer screening, and vice-versa.
“A large part of my job is to work with other physicians and other primary care providers in Northwestern Ontario to ensure we are talking with our patients about colorectal cancer screening” she said.
“Through this campaign, we’re hoping to encourage people not only to talk with their health-care provider, but also help them realize how easy it can be to take the first step, which is completing a Fecal Occult Blood Test, or FOBT.”
For more information, visit www.coveryourbutt.ca