The Green Bay Packers and Exact Sciences, the manufacturer of Cologuard, are teaming up to promote colorectal cancer awareness throughout the 2017 football season.
Colon cancer took the life of legendary Packers coach Vince Lombardi at age 57 and almost 50 years later remains the No. 2 cancer killer in the United States, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Despite being considered one of the most preventable yet least prevented forms of cancer and having high survival rate when treated early, millions of Americans are still reluctant to get screened for colon cancer or are not getting screened at recommended intervals.
"In football, a lot of game-changing decisions happen at midfield, right around the 50-yard line," said Chad Watson, director of sales and business development for the Packers. "Similarly, a lot of important personal health decisions take place around age 50, including whether or not to get screened for colon cancer. The Packers-Cologuard Colon Cancer Awareness Campaign encourages adults to take a proactive role in their health so their careers as Packers fans do not get cut short."
Through an online pledge, ticket giveaway contest and digital campaign, the Packers-Cologuard Colon Cancer Awareness Campaign encourages screening-eligible fans age 50-plus to get checked for colon cancer and asks all Packers fans to help spread the word about the importance of screening. Key campaign elements include:
• Screening Pledge & Ticket Giveaway – Fans can visit www.pckrs.com/ExactSciences for an opportunity to learn more about colon cancer and to enter to win Packers prizes by pledging to get screened or encouraging friends and family to take action. Four Grand-Prize winners will receive two tickets to attend the Oct. 22, 2017, game against New Orleans Saints at Lambeau Field. Additional prizes, such as Packers Pro Shop gift cards and autographed footballs, will be awarded to fans throughout the season.
• Vince Lombardi Cancer Foundation – On Oct. 22, visitors to the Cologuard booth on the Fan Walkway outside Lambeau Field will have the opportunity to play a ball toss game to help raise awareness and earn donations to the Vince Lombardi Cancer Foundation, courtesy of Exact Sciences.
• Packers Hall of Famer Jerry Kramer – A member of the famous Lombardi Packers teams of the 1960s that won Super Bowls I and II, Jerry Kramer will lend his voice and perspectives to the awareness campaign throughout the season. In a variety of media, Kramer will discuss the life lessons he learned from Coach Lombardi, how the team reacted to the coach's cancer diagnosis and why he remains involved in cancer awareness charities and causes.
"Coach Lombardi taught that in sports and in life, winning requires teamwork and commitment to a shared goal," said Kevin Conroy, chairman and CEO of Exact Sciences. "Colon cancer is highly treatable if detected early, but not enough Americans are getting screened. This may be because people are uncomfortable with the topic or do not realize there are noninvasive screening options, such as Cologuard for people 50 and above at average risk for colon cancer. With this awareness campaign we're working to turn that around by encouraging fans to talk to their doctor, friends and family members about colon cancer screening options."
Wisconsin-headquartered Exact Sciences is the maker of Cologuard, the only noninvasive screening option that uses the DNA found in a person's stool sample to detect colon cancer and precancerous growths. Cologuard is fully covered by Medicare and incorporated into the medical policies of the leading national health insurers, as well as a broad cross-section of local and regional health plans. To learn more, visit www.cologuardtest.com. The American Cancer Society recommends most individuals at average risk should begin colorectal cancer screening at age 50.