What is Crucial Catch?
Since 2009, every October the National Football League (NFL) has admirably promoted its Crucial Catch campaign. Every team in the league participates by offering Crucial Catch merchandise, contributing signed auction items, and hosting events in their respective cities to help the NFL raise money for cancer awareness. Originally coinciding with Breast Cancer Awareness month, most teams opted to wear alternate uniform pieces, socks, towels, and hats, emblazoned with pink accents. More recently, the NFL partnered directly with the American Cancer Society and expanded the cancer outreach to include all cancers, and merchandise now features an accent mark containing all the associated cancer’s colors, including white for lung cancer!
The Crucial Catch campaign promotes early screenings and ‘catching’ cancer before it has progressed. Money raised has helped people gain access to routine breast, colorectal, and cervical screenings.
However, one gap in this campaign’s offense is that it makes no mention of the 2nd leading cause of lung cancer, radon gas, and the simple test anyone can do to determine their home's radon gas levels. The recently launched Defender APP only mentions lung cancer risks by means of smoking. Users are prompted to answer questions in the app, and subsequently provided useful "MVP Tips" such as "Get Screened", "Step Away From Tobacco", "Eat More Fruits and Vegetables", etc. These MVP Tips would be a perfect place to suggest "Test Your Home For Radon Gas", with the description along the lines of, “Did you know the home where you live and cheer for your NFL team may have elevated levels of radon gas, a known carcinogen and 2nd leading cause of lung cancer?"
What Can Be Done?
The NFL's Crucial Catch efforts and promotion of early detection of cancer are nothing short of admirable, and should be applauded. However, lung cancer is not limited to smokers, and that dangerous stigma needs to end. Including radon gas in the context of lung cancer to their millions of viewers would go along way in helping create much needed awareness about the significant risk radon gas poses.
Take a defensive stand against cancer causing radon gas, and test your home today.