Colorado in the United States of America is making fruitful efforts towards minimizing the cases of cancer in the state. See how.
The Colorado Cancer Plan by the Colorado state in the United States of America has helped in guiding the prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and control of cancer across the state for over 20 years. Given its well-regulated healthcare plans and actions, it is quite common to come across citizens of the state being healthier in comparison to the other states. Moreover, Colorado is also considered as one of the best states in the USA for preventing terminal cancer. In a study, it was found that 6 out of the 10 counties in the United States of America with the lowest rates of cancer were in Colorado. The Colorado Rockies has been specifically regarded as one of the healthiest counties in the state when it comes to cancer diagnoses and prevention. One of the major reasons for such positive results is the five-year plan development by the Colorado state. The specific five-year plans have been highly effective in passing the required legislation while raising ample awareness for cancer prevention at the same time.
Colorado State’s Five-Year Cancer Prevention Plan
The latest 2016-2020 plan by the state continues in its tradition. It also aims at providing a proper framework for reducing the overall risk, mortality, and incidences associated with cancer in the state. The latest five-year plan aims at coming up with a shared approach when it comes to fighting cancer-related challenges in Colorado with the help of preliminary prevention, early diagnosis, proper treatment, and provision of ample support to the cancer survivors –right from the point of diagnosis to death.
The five-year plan by the state of Colorado is built around a strong foundation. It is used to describe the cancer burden of the state, including the disastrous effects cancer has on the low-income, ethnic/racial, and uninsured population of the state. The objectives of the plan are organized along the continuum of cancer rather than the type of cancer. It serves to be a roadmap of specific objectives, broader goals, and evidence-based strategies that are organized into five core areas of focus, including:
- Prevention: For encouraging healthy behaviors along with ensuring a less toxic environment for lowering the risks of developing cancer.
- Screening: Promoting the benefits as well as ensuring increased coverage of the right screening tests for the early as well as effective diagnosis of the condition.
- Diagnosis & treatment: Reducing the existing barriers for ensuring the early diagnosis & treatment while making use of the best practices and encouraging participation in clinical trials.
- Survivorship & End-of-life Care: Ensuring the necessary resources and services that are required for supporting the continued physical as well as mental health of the rising number of cancer survivors in the state.
- Cross-Cutting: Supporting the integration as well as training of the community health workers and patient navigators while promoting awareness of the existing insurance coverage.
Cancer is undoubtedly making an impact on all the Coloradans. As such, the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment suggests that the Colorado Cancer Plan serves to be a roadmap to controlling as well as preventing cancer in the long run. The Colorado organizations believe that it is only by working together in the state is how we can reduce the overall burden of cancer while making sure that Colorado becomes one of the healthiest states in the entire country.
How is Colorado Preventing Cancer?
Under the typical 5-year plan, the Colorado state aims at raising awareness about the simple ways to prevent cancer. Here are some of the common ways in which Colorado aims at fighting back terminal cancer of different types:
- Reducing Tobacco Usage: There is no denying the role of tobacco when it comes to increasing the overall risks of developing cancer. Tobacco, in fact, is one of the primary reasons when it comes to the increased risks of cancer of different types. The state of Colorado has been fighting this reality for several years.
In modern times, around 15.6 percent of the Coloradans are habitual to smoking. This is in comparison to 17.1 percent of smokers all around the country. The major decline in the percentage of tobacco consumption is the provision of in-depth tobacco education to young students while encouraging individuals to not smoke in the first place.
It is quite a common misconception that smoking a few cigarettes will do no major harm to the body. Smoking any amount tends to increase the overall risks of cancer along with other tobacco-related diseases. To stay safe from the harmful effects of tobacco consumption, here are a few additional tips:
- Avoid smoking in the first place
- Avoid trendy tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, hookahs, vaping machines, and others. These might be less harmful but might have long-term effects on the body.
- Acknowledge your smoking habits and work upon the same to quit smoking as soon as possible.
- Know about the potential health dangers of smoking. Revise the same on a daily basis to help you leave the habit as soon as possible.
- Try socializing in different ways that do not encourage you to smoke or take up any alternative to smoking.
- Decreasing Environmental Exposure: Paul Kraus from Colorado is known to be the longest survivor of mesothelioma in the world. Undoubtedly, Paul suffers from one of the deadliest forms of cancers –mesothelioma. He acquired the conditions due to his continuous exposure to asbestos while he was working. He has been successful in surviving mesothelioma. Still, he keeps continuously pushing for the legislation to reduce the overall environmental exposure or factors that could lead to cancer in the long run.
As per his request, Paul wants to include a specific drive that should aim at reducing pollution rates in Colorado. It is due to reduced pollution rate that the Rockies tend to have fewer cases of cancer patients every year. There are several environmental exposures or factors that might damage the DNA structure of the cells –leading to cancer. Some of the exposures might include common environmental elements like the chemicals present in radiation, environmental smoke, tobacco smoke, or UV rays from the sun. People can look forward to avoiding some of the cancer-causing environmental exposures, including smoke, tobacco, and the sun’s UV rays.
- Increasing the Rates of Early Diagnosis: Paul Kraus –the mesothelioma survivor, recalls that he was able to survive the deadly condition through his relatively early diagnosis of the disease. Research in the field of cancer has continuously stated the importance of early diagnosis and detection of the disease that can help in increasing the overall likelihood of fighting and surviving cancer in the long run.
The experts believe that a 99 percent survival rate of skin cancer can be achieved easily through early detection. The same trend applies to all types of cancers. The conditions related to cancer are known to become deadly only after the disease has spread to other areas of the body. If you are able to prevent the same through regular checkups & screenings, you might as well get treated for your condition effectively. The state of Colorado in the United States of America has been working towards getting its diagnosis rates higher by encouraging the citizens to go for regular check-ups to be assured of the best results.
- Improving Healthy Behaviors: The healthy behaviors that we follow and the healthy lifestyle that we tend to live on a daily basis play a vital role in determining our health and wellness in the long run. Like a majority of the developed nations out there, the Colorado state aims at focusing on the constant drive towards improving the healthy behaviors of its citizens. As mentioned before, the state has already been making efforts towards cutting short the consumption of smoking in men & women of the region.
However, as per the specific five-year plan, the state of Colorado merely does not aim at encouraging its citizens to exercise more and eat healthy food items. Additionally, it also aims at incorporating improved access to some of the leading healthy behaviors by addressing the economic and social equality concerns. There is no surprise in the fact that poor communities or low-earning groups tend to have higher rates of cancers. The lowest rates of cancer in Colorado belong to those being in the middle-class or high-income groups. In Colorado, the government aims at working hard towards addressing the low-income groups of the state as well to reduce the overall risks & rates of cancer in the state.
- Investing in Advanced Cancer Treatments: Colorado is known to be filled with several high-end non-profit organizations (NGOs) that aim at investing into low-cost, advanced treatment options for cancer treatment –both for the purpose of treating its symptoms as well as cancer at the same time. One such leading venture in the state of Colorado is the one involving the utilization of cannabis for treating cancer. The utilization of CBD and THC in the treatment of cancer has been significantly used as a way of treating the side effects of chemotherapy several times. Still, additional research is required to affirm the utilization of cannabis in the treatment of cancer in the coming times.
Another famous treatment option that most health experts around the world are using is “immunotherapy.” The state of Colorado also aims at using this revolutionary form of treatment for cancer to enhance the quality of treatment. Currently, the University of Colorado is conducting several studies with respect to the utilization of vaccinations for healing patients with cancer. At the Anschutz Campus at the University of Colorado, several successful immunotherapy-based treatments has been carried out on patients to observe its results.
Colorado’s Efforts Towards Becoming the Healthiest State in the Nation
Colorado is already known to possess the best cancer rate in the entire United States of America. The government of the Colorado state has been highly attentive to the respective needs of the citizens. Therefore, it regularly publishes plans on how it aims at improving the overall public health by reducing the overall risk of cancer. In the meantime, the researchers in the state are working towards discovering as well as developing new, advanced treatments that aim at addressing the weaknesses of conventional chemotherapy options.
As per the five-year plan of the Colorado state for preventing cancer, each individual in the state has a specific role to play towards preventing and controlling cancer while supporting cancer survivors in the state. As Coloradans are continuously faced with major decisions about the overall risks of developing cancer during all points of the cancer continuum, the concept of cross-cutting is gaining impetus. The experts believe that some decisions are required to be made, including screening options, prevention behaviors, post-treatment care, effective options of prevention, and support to the cancer survivors. The given choices require the citizens of the state to analyze basic information about health as well as healthcare, assess information about cancer risk, measure the risks as well as benefits of each decision, and make use of the best information that is available for making a choice resonating within the values, cultures, and priorities.
Early diagnosis and treatment serve to be the cornerstones of the effective strategies that have helped in reducing the mortality rate due to cancer over the past two decades. It is believed that all Coloradans deserve the right access to cancer care & treatment options that adhere to the standards that are accepted nationally. The steps taken by the Colorado state are something that other nations, as well as regions of the world, should look up to with respect to preventing cancer and uplifting the health conditions.