Bethesda, MD (November 8, 2012) – In honor of Veterans Day weekend, Team Draft, in partnership with Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) and Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA), is joining with Walter Reed National Medical Center and select lung cancer screening centers across the country to offer lung cancer screenings to veterans. From November 8through November 13, 2012 participating medical centers will invite veterans to complete a lung cancer risk assessment and learn about the risks and benefits of screening—information that could save their lives.
The national screening event kicks off at noon on Thursday, November 8, 2012, at Walter Reed during a ceremony honoring veterans. Team Draft’s co-founder, nationally recognized health advocate and former NFL linebacker, Chris Draft, will serve as keynote speaker at the ceremony.
“Having played in the NFL for twelve years, I understand the importance of a strong team,” says Draft who lost his wife, Keasha, to lung cancer late last year. “It takes a team to tackle cancer, and we are proud to partner with Lung Cancer Alliance and Vietnam Veterans of America for this national initiative to take care of our veterans and shine the light on the critically important role early detection plays in providing real hope in the fight against lung cancer,” Draft continues.
Today, only 15% of lung cancers are diagnosed at an early, curable stage. But thanks to state-ofthe-art screening techniques like those being implemented at Walter Reed and the other participating centers, lung cancer mortality rates have dropped by 20% in some patient groups. As Draft explains, “other cancers, like breast cancer and prostate cancer, have given us the playbook for lowering the lung cancer mortality rate and it starts with early detection backed up by quality care.”
Screenings will take place at select centers across the county that follow the high standards outlined in the National Framework for Excellence in Lung Cancer Screening, which was developed by LCA to help insure lung cancer screenings are performed in a safe, effective and equitable manner consistent with the highest standards of care. These facilities include:
• Walter Reed National Medical Military Center, Bethesda, Maryland
• Lahey Clinic, Burlington, Massachusetts
• Middlesex Hospital Total Lung Care Center, Middleton, Connecticut• Norton Healthcare, Louisville, Kentucky
• Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, New York
• St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, Arizona
• Swedish Cancer Institute, Seattle, Washington
• Slyvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, Miami, Florida
• WellStar Health System, Atlanta, Georgia
The Facts About Lung Cancer
For decades, the facts regarding lung cancer have been sobering:
• Anyone can get lung cancer.
• Over 60% of lung cancers are diagnosed in people who never smoked or in former smokers.1
• Lung cancer surpassed breast cancer as the #1 cancer killer for women in 1987.2
• Lung cancer kills more people than any other cancer3
, and takes more lives than breast, cervical, and prostate cancers . . . combined.
• The five year survival rate for lung cancer is just 16%—a rate that has changed very little since
But now there is HOPE! The use of state-of-the-art lung cancer screening techniques is reducing mortality rates by 20% in some patient groups6 while cutting-edge team-based, multidisciplinary treatment procedures are improving the quality of life for lung cancer patients across the country. And thanks to advances in molecular tumor mutation testing, researchers and treating physicians are developing effective personal lung cancer treatments designed to extent and, ultimately, save lives.7 The key to making even greater strides is funding, but funding for lung cancer research is impacted by the “smoker’s disease” stigma.8 That’s why Team Draft is campaigning to change the face of lung cancer.
About The Chris Draft Family Foundation and Team Draft
The Chris Draft Family Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation dedicated to strengthening communities by empowering families to live healthy lifestyles. The Foundation focuses on several initiatives with overarching themes that stress the importance of education, healthy lifestyles, character development, personal responsibility, self-discipline and physical fitness. To learn more about the Foundation, please visit www.chrisdraftfamilyfoundation.org.
Through its Team Draft initiative, which was launched by Chris and Keasha during her year-long battle with Stage IV Lung Cancer, the Foundation is carrying on Keasha’s fight to tackle cancer by promoting awareness, research and scholarship, and to save lives by changing the face of lung cancer. Team Draft is dedicated to raising awareness, accelerating research for a cure, and leading improvements in the patient treatment experience by improving cancer treatment facilities and creating a better environment in which those battling the disease can fight. To learn more about Team Draft, please visit www.teamdraft.org.