Businesses needed to ‘Paint the Town Blue’

Peconic Bay in Riverhead
BARBARAELLEN KOCH FILE PHOTO | The entrance to Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead.

Needed this March: Riverhead businesses to help “Paint the Town Blue” — not for Blue Wave pride — but to promote colorectal cancer awareness.

PBMC Health is teaming up with the Cancer Services Program of Suffolk County and the American Cancer Society. Together, they are seeking the support of area businesses to help them share the information.

Colon cancer affects both men and women, and although it is preventable, treatable and beatable with proper screening, it is the second leading cause of cancer related death in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society.

During the weeklong event, participating businesses will decorate using the color blue, and engage employees and customers with posters, giveaways and educational material provided by all three organizations.

Businesses can also come up with creative ideas of their own.

The Hyatt Place East End, for example, will be changing its outside lighting to blue, and The Riverhead Project will be offering a special drink called “Bottoms Up,” according to a release about the event.

A kick-off breakfast will be held at 8 a.m. Tuesday at The Hyatt Place East End in Riverhead.

“With the support of local businesses, we can help spread this lifesaving message,” Dr. Clare Bradley of the American Cancer Society said in a press release. “We are also working together to provide resources and support for families, friends and loved ones dealing with a colon cancer diagnosis. We are not just providing information — we are providing help and hope.”

Only half of insured adults aged 50-75 are up to date with colon cancer screening, and of the uninsured, only 36 percent routinely get screened, according to the ACS.

“The risk of colon cancer increases with age, encouraging everyone 50+ to get screened is a proactive step in the prevention of colon cancer,” said Andrew Mitchell, president and CEO of PBMC Health.

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