LOS ANGELES, Calif., and NEW YORK, NY – June 21, 2021 – June is Men’s Health Awareness Month and six-time NBA Champion, Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer and prostate cancer survivor Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has partnered with the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) and NBA Cares in a new public service announcement (PSA) to create awareness about an important men’s health issue, prostate cancer. The PSA first aired on broadcast and across social media on Father’s Day, June 20th, during the NBA Playoffs. By encouraging men to get screened and know their risks, the new PSA also presents an opportunity to address inequities in health care.
One in eight men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime, but for Black men, one in seven will develop the disease. Black men are over 75% more likely to develop prostate cancer than Caucasian men, and are more than twice as likely to die from the disease. When it comes to equality, including in health care, Abdul-Jabbar refuses to be silent. Six months ago, he revealed his previous battle with prostate cancer, recognizes the inequities and is now an advocate for better health care.
For more than 25 years, PCF has been on the forefront of battling this insidious disease and has been on a mission to save men’s lives by advancing research, accelerating treatments, and providing ongoing education for families affected by prostate cancer.
“We are honored that NBA Cares has partnered with PCF and simultaneously excited and humbled to have Kareem be an eloquent voice for men’s health and health equity, both of which have been part of PCF’s mission since its inception,” said PCF President and CEO Jonathan Simons, MD. “Prostate cancer presents with sobering statistics in the Black community and this partnership with PCF, NBA Cares, and Abdul-Jabbar will provide heightened visibility in raising awareness and potentially save the lives of countless more men.”
- In 2021, almost 250,000 U.S. men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, and more than 34,000 will die from the disease. That is one new case diagnosed every two minutes and another death from prostate cancer every 15 minutes.
- One in eight men in the U.S. will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime. For Black men, one in seven will develop the disease.
- Black men are over 75% more likely to develop prostate cancer than Caucasian men, and are more than twice as likely to die from the disease.
- Prostate cancer is the most common non-skin cancer in men in the U.S., and the fourth most common tumor diagnosed worldwide.
- Early detection through screening is key. If caught early, nearly 100% of men with prostate cancer will survive five years or longer.
About NBA Cares
NBA Cares is the league’s global social responsibility program that builds on the NBA’s mission of addressing important social issues. NBA Cares programs and participants have provided more than 5.8 million hours of hands-on service and created more than 1,675 places where kids and families can live, learn or play in communities around the world. Internationally, NBA Cares has created more than 332 places where kids and families can live, learn or play in 40 countries and territories. NBA Cares works with nationally and internationally recognized youth-serving programs that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes, including: Boys & Girls Clubs of America; Vera Institute of Justice; Thurgood Marshall College Fund; UNICEF; Special Olympics; The Jed Foundation; Share Our Strength and GLSEN.
About the Prostate Cancer Foundation
The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) is the world’s leading philanthropic organization dedicated to funding life-saving prostate cancer research. Founded in 1993 by Mike Milken, PCF has raised more than $865 million in support of cutting-edge research by more than 2,200 research projects at 220 leading cancer centers in 22 countries around the world. Thanks in part to PCF’s commitment to ending death and suffering from prostate cancer, the death rate is down by over 50 percent and countless more men are alive today as a result. The Prostate Cancer Foundation research now impacts more than 70 forms of human cancer by focusing on immunotherapy, the microbiome, and food as medicine. Learn more at www.pcf.org.
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