Hunterdon – Mercer Chronic Disease Coalition
Aligned with the State’s Health Improvement Plan, Healthy New Jersey 2030, which aims to improve health for all people, the goal of the Chronic Disease Coalition is to address the state’s cancer burden and work toward improving health outcomes for people with or at risk for cancer and other chronic diseases. State-wide coalitions are supported by the New Jersey Department of Health Office of Cancer Control and Prevention to coordinate comprehensive cancer control efforts in New Jersey and contribute to the national efforts of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
The Chronic Disease Coalition delivers education-oriented initiatives to promote cancer prevention, support early detection efforts, and address the needs of cancer survivors to promote quality of life. It deploys evidence-based strategies through a collaborative and coordinated approach to education and outreach activities. Through partnerships and collaborations, the Coalition establishes community-wide involvement in the planning, coordination, and implementation of cancer and chronic disease targeted initiatives.
Cancer education equips residents with the information they need to avoid behaviors that place them at risk of developing cancer, as well as, understanding the warning signs so cancers can be detected early, treated, and controlled or cured. Prevention education initiatives increase knowledge and address the cancer burden by reducing overall new cases and deaths from the disease. Group presentations and initiatives focus on breast, colorectal, lung, cervical, skin cancers, and survivorship.
Key strategies in preventing cancer and early detection include the following:
Stop smoking. Smoking is linked to several types of cancer — not just lung cancer. Quitting will reduce the risk of cancer in the future.
Avoid excessive sun exposure. Harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun can increase the risk of skin cancer. Limit sun exposure by staying in the shade, wearing protective clothing, or applying sunscreen.
Eat a healthy diet. Choose a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Select whole grains and lean proteins.
Exercise most days of the week. Regular exercise is linked to a lower risk of cancer. At least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week is recommended.
Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obese may increase the risk of cancer. Work to achieve and maintain a healthy weight through a combination of a healthy diet and regular exercise.
Schedule cancer screening exams. Talk with a healthcare provider about what types of cancer screening exams that are best based on risk factors.
Ask your provider about immunizations against diseases that increase your risk of cancer. Immunizations can help prevent hepatitis B, which increases the risk of liver cancer, and human papillomavirus (HPV), which increases the risk of cervical and other cancers.
Cancer Survivors and Caregivers
Cancer survivors and their caregivers face physical, emotional, psychosocial, spiritual, and financial challenges as a result of diagnosis and treatment. Programs address the needs of survivors and caregivers such as:
- Educational sessions addressing topics such as nutrition, stress management, and physical activity help survivors and caregivers maintain a healthy lifestyle.
- Cancer Thriving & Surviving Workshops offer a comprehensive 6-week curriculum to help develop skills for self-management of chronic conditions.
- Continued support post-treatment to connect patients to services.
With over 16.9 million cancer survivors living in the United States today, managing the health care needs of cancer survivors can be complex, and requires a coordinated approach to care. Hunterdon Healthcare combines the expertise of both primary care and specialty providers to improve the overall health and well-being of cancer survivors. Please see our Survivorship Resources by clicking here.
Office of Cancer Control and Prevention
The Office of Cancer Control and Prevention (OCCP) coordinates comprehensive cancer control efforts in New Jersey and is a collaborative process by which a community and its partners pool resources to reduce illness and death due to cancer through prevention, early detection, treatment, rehabilitation, and palliation.
The OCCP participates in the national efforts of the CDC to establish state-based cancer control plans and conduct prevention of cancer risk factors, enhance early detection of preventable cancers and facilitate survivorship through the activities of its Chronic Disease Coalitions.
Search for Cancer Resources
Find additional information about cancer resources in New Jersey (Hospitals, Hospices, Mammography Centers, CPHC, NJCEED, Chronic Disease Coalitions, and Nutrition and Physical Activity Programs) by clicking here.