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Janeth Sanchez (left), New Mexico State University community health educator for the Colorectal Cancer Awareness initiative, discusses health issues with an unidentified visitor at the Las Cruces Farmers and Crafters Market. The addition of the eye-catching Inflatable Colon as an educational tool was made possible through a grant from the National Cancer Institute’s National Outreach Network. | Photo courtesy NMSU

NMSU Cancer Outreach Program to Host Free Community Health Fair Friday

The Cancer Outreach Program at New Mexico State University’s Department of Public Health Sciences will host a health fair this week to raise awareness of colorectal cancer.

The event, which commemorates Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, will be from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, March 3, at the Ben Archer Health Center, 1998 Motel Blvd. in Las Cruces. The health fair is free and open to the public. The Department of Public Health Sciences is housed in the College of Health and Social Services.

“The NMSU Cancer Outreach Program, in partnership with Ben Archer Health Center, invite everyone for a fun-filled health education event with activities for children and a special guest DJ,” said Karoline Sondgeroth, community health education program specialist. “The goal of this health fair is to increase colorectal cancer awareness and promote healthier lifestyles. We hope the community will come out and tour the giant inflatable colon.”

Various other local health agencies will be presenting additional health information and services, such as free glucose and blood pressure testing. Promotional items will also be distributed to the health fair attendees.

According to the National Cancer Institute, colorectal cancer is the fourth most-common cancer and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths. If caught early, colorectal cancer can be treated effectively. Unfortunately, less than 20 percent of racial and ethnic minorities in the U.S. participated in colorectal cancer screening in the past year. Given the low screening rates for this cancer, it is expected colorectal cancer will result in over 50,000 deaths during 2017.

For more information about the health fair, please contact Karoline Sondgeroth at 575-646-5065.

Author:  Adriana M. Chavez

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