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For Immediate Release:
April 9, 2013

American Cancer Society, City of New Bedford and Southcoast Centers for Cancer Care Call on Local Residents to Participate in Historic Cancer Research Effort

Community Involvement Can Answer Critical Questions about Cancer Causes, Prevention

NEW BEDFORD, Mass. — As it celebrates its 100th birthday, the American Cancer Society is looking to local residents to help finish the fight against cancer by reaching full enrollment in a historic research study. Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3) will give scientists a better understanding of cancer causes and prevention. The Society is looking for local men and women between the ages of 30 and 65 from various racial/ethnic backgrounds with no personal history of cancer to help reach full enrollment of at least 300,000 people.

Thanks to support from the City of New Bedford and Southcoast™ Centers for Cancer Care, part of the Southcoast Health System, local residents will have many opportunities to enroll in CPS-3:

  • Tuesday, June 4, 2:00 6:30 p.m., Charlton Memorial Hospital, 363 Highland Avenue, Fall River
  • Wednesday, June 5, Noon 4:30 p.m., St. Luke's Hospital, 101 Page Street, New Bedford
  • Wednesday, June 5, 3:00 6:30 p.m., Fort Taber Community Center, 1000 South Rodney French Boulevard, New Bedford
  • Thursday, June 6, Noon 4:30 p.m., Tobey Hospital, 43 High Street, Wareham

There will also be a CPS-3 enrollment at the American Cancer Society Relay For Life of Greater Fall River, Friday, June 21, 5:00 9:00 p.m. at Bishop Connolly High School in Fall River. No appointment is necessary to enroll at the Relay.

"Knowledge is power and the more we know, the more we will improve our understanding of cancer. Armed with a wealth of information from across the population, we will better position ourselves to find ways to prevent cancer, save lives, and give the gift of time. I encourage the residents of New Bedford to join with Americans nationwide in the fight for more birthdays by volunteering to participate in CPS-3," said Mayor Jon Mitchell.

"At Southcoast, we are focused on preventing cancer in addition to providing the very best care and treatment options available," said Elizabeth Blanchard, MD, medical oncologist and Director of the Clinical Trials Program for Southcoast Centers for Cancer Care. "In addition to changing our own health habits, many of us can help cancer research by taking the time to participate in this study and, thus, adding to the extensive body of knowledge that helps all of us better understand this devastating disease. It is a simple, but very valuable contribution that you can make to this cause."

Signing for the study up requires a one-time in-person visit to read and sign a consent form, complete a survey, have your waist measured, and give a small non-fasting blood sample like what you'd do during a routine doctor visit. Participants will also complete a more detailed survey at home and will continue to receive periodic follow-up surveys in the future that researchers will use to look for more clues to cancer's causes.

"By joining this study, people can literally help us save lives, giving future generations more time with families and friends, more memories, more celebrations, and more birthdays," said Janet McGrail Spillane, State Vice President for Health Initiatives, American Cancer Society. "As the official sponsor of birthdays, celebrating our own 100th birthday in 2013, we can think of no more valuable contribution to the cancer fight."

CPS-3 is the latest addition to the Society's groundbreaking cancer prevention studies, which have been instrumental in helping identify major factors that can affect cancer risk. Researchers say CPS-3 holds the best hope of identifying new and emerging cancer risks. But its success depends on members of the community becoming involved. Researchers will use data from CPS-3 to build on evidence from those earlier cancer prevention studies, which began in the 1950s and involved hundreds of thousands of volunteer participants.

"Many individuals diagnosed with cancer struggle to answer the question, 'What caused my cancer?' In many cases, we don't know the answer," said Alpa V. Patel, Ph.D., principal investigator of CPS-3. "CPS-3 will help us better understand what factors cause cancer, and once we know that, we can be better equipped to prevent cancer."

For more information about CPS-3, or to schedule your enrollment appointment, visit or call toll-free 1-888-604-5888.

About the American Cancer Society

The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience to save lives and end cancer for good. As a global grassroots force of three million volunteers, we fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. We save lives by helping you stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early, helping you get well by being there for you during and after a diagnosis, by finding cures through groundbreaking discovery and fighting back through public policy.

As the nation's largest non-governmental investor in cancer research, contributing more than $3.8 billion, we turn what we know about cancer into what we do. As a result, an estimated 13.7 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

Find a Physician: 800-497-1727

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Stephanie Poyant
Public Information Officer

Southcoast Health System is a community based health delivery system with multiple access points, offering an integrated continuum of health services throughout Southeastern Massachusetts and East Bay, Rhode Island.

It includes the three hospitals that make up Southcoast Hospitals Group — Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River, St. Luke's Hospital in New Bedford and Tobey Hospital in Wareham.

Southcoast provides advanced clinical services, such as open heart surgery, angioplasty and heart rhythm services, comprehensive cancer care, neurosurgery, weight loss surgery, orthopedic surgery, advanced imaging services and is the only provider of maternity services in the region.

Southcoast is a not-for-profit charitable organization that depends on the support of the community to provide services. More information is available online at Connect to Southcoast through social media at

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