Vermonters Taking Action Against Cancer Annual Meeting

For Immediate Release: March 23, 2011
Media Contact: Communication Office
Vermont Department of Health

BURLINGTON – Health Commissioner Harry Chen, MD, was serving as a state legislator (2003-2008) when the second Vermont State Cancer Plan was created in December of 2005.

“What impressed me then, and continues to impress me today, is that the overriding message we shared with each other – legislators, physicians, people living with cancer, cancer survivors, and private and non-profit partners statewide – is that we are all in this together,” Dr. Chen said. “We are most effective in addressing cancer when we leverage our collective strength.”

Dr. Chen will serve as a guest speaker (12:30 p.m.) at the 5th Annual Vermonters Taking Action Against Cancer (VTAAC) Annual Meeting, March 25, at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Montpelier, Vt. The theme of this year’s meeting is “Strong Partnerships.” Gov. Peter Shumlin will provide the welcome at 9:45 a.m.

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, contact VTAAC’s Coordinator, David Cranmer, either by phone (802) 872-6303, or email

The Vermont Department of Health and VTAAC work together to raise awareness, prevent cancer where possible, and improve the prospect of survival for those who are diagnosed with cancer. Through the VTAAC coalition, more than 270 Vermonters across the state are currently working to reduce cancer risks, increase cancer screening, improve access to quality cancer care and improve the quality of life for every Vermonter.

Cancer is the leading cause of death among Vermonters. Every year in Vermont, more than 3,000 people are diagnosed and about 1,200 people die from cancer. Many forms of cancer can be prevented, and the prospect of surviving cancers that are detected early continues to improve.
The third Vermont State Cancer Plan was released in April of 2010 and has 5-year, statewide goals for 2015. The 2015 Vermont State Cancer Plan is available at:

For more information on the Health Department’s cancer prevention programs visit

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