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Press Release

American Cancer Society Partners with Independence Blue Cross on Landmark Cancer Prevention Study

Independence Blue Cross will serve as the Regional Champion

Philadelphia, PA - April 25, 2012 - The American Cancer Society and Independence Blue Cross have teamed up on a large research project to help find the causes of cancer and a cure for it. The project is called the Cancer Prevention Study 3, or CPS-3, and it will study 300,000 people across the country - about 1,300 in this region. This monumental national study is expected to provide researchers extraordinarily valuable insight into the genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors that cause or prevent cancer.

Independence Blue Cross (IBC) is the Regional CPS-3 Champion, providing financial support for the study and encouraging area residents to enroll in the study. 

“Together the American Cancer Society and Independence Blue Cross are  working to eliminate cancer as a major health problem, and I commend them on their groundbreaking partnership,” said Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter. “Everyone has been affected by cancer in one way or another, so it’s our job as a community to fight back and help eradicate this disease by participating in this important study, CPS-3.”

The City of Philadelphia, which puts on the annual Blue Cross Broad Street Run, will jump-start CPS-3 enrollment at the Blue Cross Broad Street Run Expo at Lincoln Financial Field on Friday, May 4, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Saturday, May 5, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Individuals running in the race on Sunday, May 6, as well as family and friends attending the race or expo, are encouraged to enroll in the study to help create a world with less cancer and more birthday celebrations.

"Independence Blue Cross is joining with the American Cancer Society to lead the way towards finding a cure for cancer on behalf of our members and our community," said Daniel J. Hilferty, IBC president and CEO. "As the region's most trusted health insurer, we will help recruit people to participate in this critically important study that will deepen our knowledge of what causes and what could prevent this devastating disease."

"Everyone knows someone who's had cancer," said Jim Marino of the City of Philadelphia Department of Parks and Recreation, the race director of the Blue Cross Broad Street Run. "CPS-3 will help us better understand what factors cause cancer, and once we know that, we can be better equipped to prevent cancer. This race and this community have long supported the American Cancer Society, and we are honored to partner with them on this research."

Area residents 30 to 65 years old with no previous history of cancer are encouraged to enroll. But residents who are not eligible are encouraged to spread the word about the study within their community. For more information and to schedule an appointment to enroll, visit the CPS-3 Blue Cross Broad Street Run enrollment page, or visit www.cancer.org/cps3, or call the Society toll-free at 1-888-604-5888.

"This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for Americans to participate in life-saving cancer research," said Jill Sterbakov, CPS-3 volunteer champion. "We are excited to offer this opportunity for area residents to make an appointment and enroll in the study at the Blue Cross Broad Street Run Expo on May 4 and 5. Our goal is to recruit 450 of the local participants during the weekend of the Run. In order to reach these targets, we are asking for the Philadelphia community to help us spread the word of CPS-3's importance. While the American Cancer Society has been conducting these types of studies for decades, its world-class research department can study new and emerging cancer risks only if members of the community are willing to become involved."

The study will enroll a diverse population of 300,000 people across the United States. To enroll, individuals will be asked to provide a waist measurement, give a small blood sample, and complete a comprehensive survey online or at the enrollment site. Over the course of the study, participants will be asked to complete follow-up surveys every few years. All survey information will be completely confidential.

CPS-3 is the third such national study conducted by the Society. The first two studies, which began in the 1950s, have played a major role in the fight against cancer, identifying:

  • the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer;
  • the significant impact of overweight or obesity on the risk of cancer occurrence and death;
  • the impact of hormones, physical activity, diet, various medications and vitamins, and other factors in relation to cancer risk;
  • the impact of air pollution on cardiopulmonary conditions motivating the Environmental Protection Agency to propose more stringent limits on particulate air pollution;
  • the link between aspirin use and reduced risk of colon cancer;
  • the link between postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy and various gynecologic cancers (such as breast and ovarian cancer);
  • the link between diabetes and cancers of the pancreas and colon;
  • the link between physical activity and lower risk of various cancers (including breast, colon, and aggressive prostate cancer.

About the American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience to save lives and end suffering from cancer. As a global grassroots force of more than 3 million volunteers, we fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. We save lives by helping people stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early; helping people get well by being there for them during and after a cancer diagnosis; by finding cures through investment in groundbreaking discovery; by fighting back by rallying lawmakers to pass laws to defeat cancer; and by rallying communities worldwide to join the fight. As the nation's largest nongovernmental investor in cancer research, contributing more than $3.8 billion, we turn what we know about cancer into what we do. As a result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this year. To learn more about us or to get help, call us anytime, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345, or visit www.cancer.org

About Independence Blue Cross
Independence Blue Cross is a leading health insurer in southeastern Pennsylvania. Nationwide, Independence Blue Cross and its affiliates provide coverage to nearly 3.1 million people. For 74 years, Independence Blue Cross has offered high-quality health care coverage tailored to meet the changing needs of members, employers, and health care professionals. Independence Blue Cross is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Visit us at ibx.com. Fan us on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter@ibx.

About the Blue Cross Broad Street Run
The Blue Cross Broad Street Run is managed by the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department with the cooperation of city agencies and more than 85 volunteer groups. The race is held the first Sunday in May, and the course includes a variety of Philadelphia neighborhoods along Broad Street. The race raises funds for the American Cancer Society.

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