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Why Every Day Should Be National Cancer Survivors Day

CareOne celebrates cancer survivors every day at our healthcare centers. Whether we are helping survivors in their fight or aiding their recovery, every CareOne employee is inspired daily by the passion and strength shown by cancer survivors. From our home care specialists to long-term acute care, we are dedicated to helping cancer survivors continue their fight in many different ways.

While we recognize and celebrate cancer survivors every day, the first Sunday of every June is officially recognized as National Cancer Survivors Day. This is a day where everybody nationwide is encouraged to take time to celebrate cancer survivors and caretakers in their communities. CareOne is here to celebrate with you!

National Cancer Survivors Day

National Cancer Survivors Day was established in 1988, with the initial celebration taking place on June 5th of that year. The celebration was initially established by the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship. The NCCS is an advocacy group operated by cancer survivors dedicated to activism and awareness on behalf of all cancer survivors. At CareOne, we love the work they do.

Over the years, National Cancer Survivors Day has grown from a small day of recognition to a global celebration. The National Cancer Survivors Day Foundation now works year-round to organize events and promote education and advocacy for survivors. Among the foundation’s many goals is to make this day a globally recognized holiday.

Per the NCSD website, National Cancer Survivors Day is intended as “a celebration for those who have survived, an inspiration for those recently diagnosed, a gathering of support for families, and an outreach to the community.” The scope of the day is wide-ranging. Fundraising events, community outreach, support and awareness, and an all-around celebration are all mixed into the day.

Who is Considered a Cancer Survivor?

The National Cancer Survivor Day foundation takes a very inclusive approach to the celebration of this day. For them, a survivor is, “anyone living with a history of cancer – from the moment of diagnosis through the remainder of life.” Everyone is encouraged to take part in National Cancer Survivor Day. Even those actively fighting and members of their community can take part. In fact, this level of engagement is highly encouraged, as support groups are a treasured part of the recovery process.

CareOne supports every cancer survivor in our care through personalized, comprehensive, and compassionate healthcare. Those recovering from lingering effects can receive post-acute rehabilitation treatment to recover the best possible quality of life after they’ve overcome their illness. Others may require day-to-day home care from one of our dedicated providers. Every survivor’s cancer journey is unique, and CareOne strives to match each patient’s care to their own personal fight.

 History of Cancer Rehabilitation

The history of cancer treatment is a rocky one, but tremendous strides have been made over the last century. In fact, until the 20th century, many thought the disease to be incurable. The first steps toward truly effective cancer treatments were made at the end of the 19th century. In 1882, American surgeon William Stewart Halsted performed the first-ever radical mastectomy to treat breast cancer. In many ways, this procedure marked the beginning of modern cancer treatments.

Throughout the 20th century, treatment procedures grew more sophisticated. Cancer treatment often involves the removal of cancerous cells from affected areas. As a result, primitive treatments often damaged or removed healthy cells in the process as well. More precise surgical methods and treatment options like chemotherapy significantly reduce the potential for harm to healthy cells.

Additionally, much more effective cancer screening methods have been developed over the last several decades. Early detection is often critical when it comes to survival, and it is now easier than ever to screen patients. Healthcare networks like CareOne are helping lead the way with advanced and innovative new treatment methods for cancer patients.

Today, cancer survival rates are the highest they have ever been. As recently as the late-1970s, only 50% of all cancer patients in the U.S. had five-year survival rates. Today, that number is around 70%. According to the American Cancer Society, 2020 saw the steepest decline in cancer death rates ever in a single year. These trends are extraordinary and highlight that we are moving in the right direction. But they also show that there is still work to be done.

Cancer Survivors Today

Today, it’s estimated that there are over 17 million cancer survivors in America alone. Cancer survivors come in all shapes and sizes. The majority of cancer survivors (64%) are aged 65 or older, and nearly 50% of survivors are 70 or older. Cancer rates are more prevalent in older individuals, which accounts for the lower total of younger survivors.

However, when we turn our attention to pediatric cancer patients, the survival trends are highly encouraging. Today, 85% of children under the age of 15 who are diagnosed with cancer survive beyond five years. A few decades ago, that number was as low as 58%. High-quality care and services like those from CareOne aid fighters and survivors to keep these numbers changing every day.

How to Participate on National Cancer Survivors Day

There are many ways to participate in National Cancer Survivors Day events. One way is to join a fundraiser or attend an event. The early-June date means this is a big date for fundraising activities like walkathons, road races, and other outdoor events. Participating in these events is a great way to give back and support cancer survivors everywhere.

For those interested in hosting events, the National Cancer Survivor Day Foundation’s website has plenty of information about event organizations. There is no shortage of ways to honor National Cancer Survivors Day, and the Foundation provides all the resources you need to get started. All are encouraged to participate however they can.

But you do not need to participate in a large-scale event to support cancer survivors. You can also celebrate this day simply by making a donation or supporting a cancer survivor in your life. With over 17 million cancer survivors living in America today, everybody knows someone who has fought the disease and won. Taking some time out on this day to honor and celebrate those individuals can mean a lot to them.

CareOne, through our commitment to compassion and exceptional standards, makes sure that every cancer patient receives every resource necessary in their fight.

Read more about our healthcare specializations and palliative care to learn more about how we support cancer survivors every day.