SUNY Downstate Participates in Colon Cancer Challenge March 28
SUNY Downstate Medical Center partnered with the Colon Cancer Foundation for its 7th Annual Colon Cancer Challenge in Central Park, on March 28. The Colon Cancer Challenge is the premier colorectal cancer awareness event in the United States, and includes the participation of thousands of survivors, families, friends, neighbors, and health professionals. The event was held in collaboration with New York Road Runners Club.
Prior to the event SUNY Downstate medical students appeared on CBS television Friday morning, March 26 in support of colon cancer screening. On March 28 more than 50 walkers and runners on the Downstate team participated in the Remembrance and Prevention walk, 4-mile run, and 15K run. Downstate’s Center for Community Health Promotion and Wellness set up an informational table staffed by students from the Physician Assistant Program.
Thomas K. Weber, MD, who founded the Colon Cancer Challenge Foundation, said, “Thanks in large part to the organizational and fundraising efforts of the SUNY Downstate team, the 2010 Cancer Challenge was the most successful to date.” Dr. Weber is chief of surgery at the Brooklyn Campus of the VA NY Harbor Healthcare System and professor of surgery at Downstate.
Rose Jackman, the Downstate team leader said, “I was thrilled with the support of the students, faculty, and staff who gave generously and participated in the Challenge that day. We wore our blue Downstate shirts with pride.”
This year's Challenge featured a special emphasis on the importance of colon cancer screening with the launch of Sign Up New York, a program designed to enlist the public to pledge to call their doctor to schedule their colon cancer screening appointment.
Recommended screening allows for the detection of early colon cancer when it is highly curable, as well as the detection of potentially pre-cancerous polyps, which can be removed before they turn into cancer. Men and women should begin screening at age 50. Those with certain risk factors—such as a family history of colorectal polyps or cancer—may need to begin screening at a younger age.
SUNY Downstate Medical Center, founded in 1860, was the first medical school in the United States to bring teaching out of the lecture hall and to the patient’s bedside. A center of innovation and excellence in research and clinical service delivery, SUNY Downstate Medical Center comprises a College of Medicine, Colleges of Nursing and Health Related Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, a School of Public Health, University Hospital of Brooklyn, and an Advanced Biotechnology Park and Biotechnology Incubator.
SUNY Downstate ranks ninth nationally in the number of alumni who are on the faculty of American medical schools. More physicians practicing in New York City have graduated from SUNY Downstate than from any other medical school.