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Great American Smoke-out Day nears PDF Print E-mail

Letter to the Editor:

Next Thursday, Nov. 21, is the Great American Smoke-out Day.

The American Cancer Society’s (ACS) mission is to fight all cancers, including lung cancer.  Anyone can get lung cancer.  Smoking raises the risk, but people who have never smoked or quit years ago can get it, too.

Smoking accounts for about 80% of lung cancer deaths, however, lung cancer among people who never smoked still ranks in the top 10 causes of cancer death in the United States.

That is why ACS addresses many different aspects of lung cancer in addition to tobacco, including promising research, information for cancer patients and psychosocial factors like the stigma lung cancer patients feel.

The society invests in lung cancer research and that research has contributed to the development of some of the most important treatments for lung cancer available today.  They fund the most promising and innovative research projects, regardless of cancer type.

Today, ACS is supporting 129 research grants totaling $31.6 million specific to lung cancer and another 245 grants totaling nearly $88 million that have the potential to impact all cancers.

ACS confirmed the smoking/lung cancer link in the 1950s.  Since then, they have helped more than a million people quit.  The society and its advocacy affiliate, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN), have worked tirelessly to educate consumers on the dangers of smoking, provide support to those who want to kick the habit, and mobilize communities, in the United States and globally, to implement public policies that save lives.

ACS CAN fights tobacco-related lung cancer by helping pass smoke-free laws and higher tobacco taxes.  Since 2002, ACS CAN and the society have helped 24 states,  the District of Columbia,          and Puerto Rico enact              100% smoke-free workplace,      restaurant and bar laws, protecting 49% of the U.S. population from secondhand smoke.

ACS CAN led the successful fight to pass legislation that grants the U.S. Food and Drug Administration meaningful and effective authority over tobacco products.  These efforts have helped slash smoking rates, leading to a substantial decline in the lung cancer death rate and saving hundreds of thousands of lives that would have otherwise been lost to lung cancer.

ACS is there to help all cancer patients.  Last year alone, the society assisted more than a million people who called for help, providing them with free lodging while traveling for treatment, rides to and from treatment, emotional support and much more.  The research and services provided are funded through the grassroots efforts of community volunteers through the Relay For Life and Bark For Life events in our communities.

Not everything ACS does is fundraising, but everything they do depends on it.  To volunteer or participate in an event in your community, such as Relay For Life, contact me at (715) 277-4392 or at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

For support or services 24 hours a day, call 1-(800) ACS-2345 (227-2345) or visit

Diane Geis Hapka

Community Relations

American Cancer Society


Tuesday, November 12, 2013 10:55 AM

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