May 22, 2007

CRAPO PRESSES MEN'S HEALTH INITIATIVES

Introduces Senate resolution noting men's health concerns

Washington, DC - Idaho Senator Mike Crapo, who has championed the creation of a federal office for men's health issues, today introduced a Senate resolution supporting National Men's Health Week, which is June 11-17, 2007. Crapo's assignment on the Senate Finance Committee includes oversight of federal health issues. He is a two-time survivor of prostate cancer."Despite advances in medical technology and research, men continue to have a shorter lifespan than womenâ??they live an average of six years less; African-American men have the lowest life expectancy among men." Crapo said. "In the ten leading causes of death, men lead in every category. More men die of heart attacks, heart disease and cancer than women."Crapo says awareness of health issues is key to preventing them, which ultimately leads to longer life spans, fewer hospital visits and lower health costs faced by taxpayers and employers. He also introduced legislation (S. 640) in February seeking to create an Office of Men's Health inside the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), noting the office would spearhead and coordinate improved information and awareness efforts. A similar Office of Women's Health is already part of HHS."The more we can discuss the sobering statistics facing men, the better because many men need coaxing to address health issues," Crapo added. "That is why I have become engaged in supporting free or reduced-cost health screenings at Idaho fairs and other events." Since 1994, National Men's Health Week has been celebrated during June in 45 states and hundreds of cities, localities, public health departments and health care facilities. Crapo encourages families to talk about health issues because early detection can save lives. Prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer among U.S. men. Statistics show an estimated 230,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year alone and approximately 30,000 will die; prostate cancer accounts for one-third of all cancer cases in men.The Centers for Disease Control reports men have an overall total cancer rate 1.5 times higher than women, with rates for lung cancer at 1.8 times higher. The rate of death for men with HIV/AIDS is three times higher than women. The rate for cardiovascular disease diagnosis is 1.5 higher in men than in women. # # #