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Men's Health Act of 2001
Press Conference: February 14, 2001

A Press Conference was held in the U.S. Capitol on Valentine's Day 2001 to announce the introduction of the Men's Health Act of 2001. The room was packed with supporters and representatives of the media. Speakers included Representative Randy "Duke" Cunningham and Dr. Jim McDermott, Dr. Jean Bonhomme and Tracie Snitker of the Men's Health Network, author and talk show host Armin Brott, Betty Gallo of the Dean & Betty Gallo Prostate Cancer Center at the Cancer Center of New Jersey, Steve Perrine of Men's Health Magazine, and Dr. Rodney Hood of the National Medical Association.

Read Representative Cunningham's press release, below, or choose these links to learn more about the Press Conference:

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Representative Cunningham: Press Release

For Immediate Release: Contact: Harmony Allen
February 14, 2001 (202) 225-5452

CUNNINGHAM & MCDERMOTT CELEBRATE ST. VALENTINE'S DAY WITH A GIFT OF MEN'S HEALTH

WASHINGTON - Congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-San Diego) and Congressman Jim McDermott (D-Washington) today introduced the Men's Health Act. This legislation will establish an Office of Men's Health within the Department of Health & Human Services for the purpose of promoting men's health in the United States.

In 1994, Congress established National Men's Health Week, the week leading up to and including Father's Day. While Men's Health Week was an important first step, there is still much to be done to improve the health of American men. The life expectancy gap between men and women has increased from one year in 1920 to six years in 1998. This year, almost 200,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, and almost 32,000 of these men will die. Life expectancy has been longer for women than men for several decades.

Statistics show that increased research, prevention and awareness are key to improving health. "I am proud that we are now in year four of Congress' five year commitment to double medical research funding at National Institute of Health (NIH). But American men need better education on health risks that affect them," said Congressman Cunningham.

"The Office of Men's Health has the potential to positively change the lives of men across America," said Cunningham. "As a prostate cancer survivor, I know first hand the importance of annual examinations and early detection. This Office will help to raise awareness about threats to men's health and hopefully we can reduce the number of men who die each year from treatable diseases."

"Since 1990, the Office of Research on Women's Health has improved the health of women throughout the United States through the coordination of research, health care services, and education. It is critical that we create a similar office of men's health to raise awareness and promote education about the need for screening and prevention," said McDermott. "As a physician I ask why are men dying earlier than women? And, how do we prevent it? Without an Office of Men's Health, those answers will be few and far between."

"This office will be important in coordinating prostate cancer detection and education, in the promotion of health behaviors and disease prevention, in improved public information about men's health and in better informed health care professionals. This is a benefit not only to men but to their families that love them," said Jean Bonhomme, MD, MPH, Men's Health Network

 
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