Former Pro Football Coach Bill Cowher Tells Men “No Excuses” When It Comes to Getting Screened for Melanoma

  Former Pro Football Coach Bill Cowher Tells Men “No Excuses” When It Comes
  to Getting Screened for Melanoma

  New survey shows one in six men don’t want to get a skin cancer screening
                because they are afraid of what they will hear

  Second year of Melanoma Exposed™ offers free skin cancer screenings at pro
                          football events nationwide

Business Wire

NEW YORK -- April 23, 2013

A new survey shows that when it comes to getting screened for skin cancer, one
in six men avoid going for fear of the results they will receive. ^ This may
be one reason why men are almost twice as likely as women to die from
melanoma,  the deadliest form of skin cancer, and nearly two-thirds don’t see
a point in going to a dermatologist unless something is wrong, even while
incidence rates continue to rise. This can often be too late, as melanoma is
almost always curable if caught early and treated properly, but it gets much
harder to treat in advanced stages.

To address this lack of action and empower men to take an active role in their
skin health, former professional football coach Bill Cowher is teaming up for
a second time with leading melanoma advocacy groups – Melanoma International
Foundation, Melanoma Research Alliance, Melanoma Research Foundation, The Skin
Cancer Foundation – and Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE: BMY) on the
educational campaign Melanoma Exposed: Screen. Protect. Know. Tell.

The campaign is working with five professional football teams to spread the
word about melanoma and bring free skin cancer screenings to the public. Last
year, these events screened nearly 2,000 people, identifying 26 potential
melanomas, and this year the goal is to screen even more.

In year two, the campaign is encouraging men to put their excuses aside and
make skin cancer screenings a priority. The key is to get screened regularly
and catch melanoma in its early stages.

“As a former football coach, one of my biggest lessons to my players was about
being accountable for their actions. I apply this ‘no excuses’ attitude to my
health as well. There should never be any excuses for not taking the best
possible care of your health,” said Coach Cowher. “Getting your skin screened
by a dermatologist is quick and easy – it takes about 10 minutes. Men need to
face the truth and learn the facts about melanoma. By not getting screened
early and routinely, they are putting themselves at greater risk.”

The Melanoma Exposed strategy is simple: Screen – get routine skin cancer
screenings and conduct self-exams; Protect your skin by limiting your exposure
to UV rays year round; Know your risk factors, such as family history and
number of moles; and most importantly, Tell others the facts about melanoma
and encourage routine skin cancer screenings.

Now in its second year, the campaign continues to spread this message, and on
April 25, it kicks off the first of several free public skin cancer screenings
that will be held throughout the year with the Miami Dolphins, New York
Giants, Denver Broncos, San Diego Chargers and Seattle Seahawks.

“When I learned about the Melanoma Exposed campaign last year, I made sure the
whole team received a skin cancer screening as part of their annual physical,
and we will continue these screenings for every player moving forward,” said
Ronnie Barnes, senior vice president for medical services for the New York
Giants. “A skin cancer screening is an easy, painless procedure that may just
be the most important 10 minutes of a person’s life – especially men. I am
glad the Giants and other teams are back in the game to support this important
cause for a second year.”

To learn more about these free skin cancer screenings, visit

Exposing Melanoma Survey Findings

Sponsored by the Melanoma Exposed campaign, the 2013 Exposing Melanoma
national survey was conducted to shed light on the barriers that keep men from
getting screened for skin cancer. Key findings showed:

  *Top reasons men avoid getting screened for skin cancer are: they simply
    don’t have the time to get screened (42%), they think it’s a woman’s issue
    (31%) and they believe it’s a waste of time (30%)
  *Men would choose to do many activities before making a doctor’s
    appointment if they had an extra 10 minutes, such as: chores (26%),
    napping (23%), snacking (22%) and checking their social networks (21%)
  *14% of men rank “skin screening” as one of the lowest priorities for
    doctor appointments, coming after an eye exam (39%), dental exam (35%) and
    blood test (29%)

“Last year, when we conducted skin cancer screenings at football games, many
men did not want to get screened because they were afraid of what we might
find, and our survey supports this sentiment,” said Elizabeth K. Hale, M.D.,
clinical associate professor of dermatology at the New York University of
School of Medicine.“Men don’t get screened as often as they should, so we are
catching it later when the cancer may have already progressed, which can be
scary. Although I tend to see more women in my practice, I diagnose more men
with the more aggressive stages of melanoma. The key with melanoma is to catch
it early when it is most treatable.”

To view the multimedia assets associated with this release, please visit:

About Melanoma

Melanoma is a form of skin cancer that is caused by the overgrowth of a type
of skin cell (melanocyte) that is responsible for producing the pigment
melanin that gives color to the skin and eyes. The incidence of melanoma has
been increasing for the past three decades; it is estimated that approximately
75,000 Americans are diagnosed annually with the disease. Melanoma can occur
anywhere on the body, but for men, it is most often found between the
shoulders and hips or the head and neck. While the majority of melanomas occur
on the skin, they can develop in other areas of the body where melanocytes
exist, such as the mouth.

About the Melanoma Exposed Campaign

Melanoma Exposedis a public awareness campaign designed to educate Americans
about melanoma and its risk factors and encourage them to take a more active
role in their skin health. The Melanoma Exposed campaign is a partnership of
the following advocacy groups and is sponsored by Bristol-Myers Squibb. For
more information about the campaign, visit

Melanoma International Foundation

Established in 2003, the Melanoma International Foundation (MIF) is a
501(c)(3) non-profit organization serving the community at large as a valuable
resource. MIF develops, supports, and provides innovative programs for the
prevention, early detection and treatment of melanoma as well as navigating
patients to clinical trials where it hopes a viable treatment will be found.

Melanoma Research Alliance

The Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA) is a public charity formed under the
auspices of the Milken Institute, with the generous founding support of Debra
and Leon Black. It supports an international, cross-disciplinary group of
biomedical researchers possessing clinical and scientific expertise to
explore, identify and pursue innovative solutions to critical research
questions, leading to better treatments and a cure for melanoma patients.
Since its founding in 2007, MRA has become the largest private funder of
melanoma research.

Melanoma Research Foundation

The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) is the largest independent organization
devoted to melanoma. Committed to the support of medical research in finding
effective treatments and eventually a cure for melanoma, the MRF also educates
patients and physicians about prevention, diagnosis and the treatment of
melanoma. The MRF is an active advocate for the melanoma community, helping to
raise awareness of this disease and the need for a cure.

The Skin Cancer Foundation

The Skin Cancer Foundation is the only global organization solely devoted to
the prevention, early detection and treatment of skin cancer. The mission of
the Foundation is to decrease the incidence of skin cancer through public and
professional education and research.

Bristol-Myers Squibb

Bristol-Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to
discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail
over serious diseases. For more information about Bristol-Myers Squibb, visit, or follow the company on Twitter at

About the Survey and TNS

Participants in the 5-question, self-administered online omnibus survey were a
nationally-representative sample of 1,250 American males 18 years of age and
older. The study was conducted from March 6, 2013 – March 10, 2013 using the
field services of TNS. The margin of sampling error at the 95% level of
confidence is ±2.8%. Data are weighted to reflect accurate representation of
the population.

TNS is the world’s largest custom research agency delivering insights and
research-based business advice to its clients so they can make more effective
business decisions. TNS offers comprehensive industry knowledge within many
different industry sectors, supported by a unique product offering that
stretches across a range of marketing and business issues, specializing in
product development and innovation, brand and communication, stakeholder
management, retail and shopper, and qualitative research. TNS is part of the
Kantar Group.


Bristol-Myers Squibb
Melanie Brunner, 609-252-6338
Kate Fisher, 212-880-5204
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