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Chicago Bears Join the American Academy of Dermatology in Fight against Skin Cancer

CHICAGO, July 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Chicago Bears are excited to announce the team's partnership with the American Academy of Dermatology (Academy) in an effort to raise awareness of skin cancer. Through this partnership, the Chicago Bears will host free SPOT me™ skin cancer screenings at a preseason fan event on Saturday, August 2 at Soldier Field.

SPOT me™ is an educational campaign designed to inform the public, particularly men, about the dangers and risks of skin cancer, and encourages people to get screened by a board-certified dermatologist. As participants in the SPOT me™ campaign, the Bears are inviting fans to attend their preseason event on August 2 to receive free skin cancer screenings and learn how to reduce their risks of this preventable disease. Fans that receive a free skin cancer screening will also be eligible to win autographed Bears' memorabilia.

"The Chicago Bears are proud to be part of the SPOT me™ campaign which educates fans about the importance of skin cancer prevention and detection," said vice president of Sales & Marketing, Chris Hibbs. "Our fans are loyal and spend their time braving the elements, including hot and humid days in the sun, to support our team. That's why we are partnering with the American Academy of Dermatology – based right here in our backyard – to bring the SPOT me™ campaign to our Meijer Family Fest, making it easy for our fans to get screened for skin cancer and learn about early detection."

Chicago residents have reason to freshen up on their skin cancer knowledge, as nationwide, Illinois is projected to have the 10th highest number of new cases of melanoma – the deadliest form of skin cancer –  with 2,440 cases expected in 2014. Men in particular need to be aware, as men over 50 are at greater risk of developing the disease compared to the rest of the general public. In fact, a recent survey by the Academy found that while more than 90% of American men know something about skin cancer, only six in 10 (61%) know how to detect signs on their skin, and even fewer actually visit a doctor for annual skin cancer screenings (18%).

At the Bears' SPOT me™ event on August 2, a team of board-certified dermatologists will be conducting free skin cancer screenings between 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. at Soldier Field.

"I think Chicagoans may have a false sense of security when it comes to sun protection.  While our temperatures and sun exposure are more moderate than cities in the south and west, we are all at risk for skin cancer. In fact, even on cloudy days, up to 80% of the sun's harmful UV rays can penetrate your skin," said board-certified dermatologist Ashish Bhatia, MD, FAAD, Associate Professor of Clinical Dermatology at Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. "We should all protect our skin by seeking shade, wearing protective clothing, and applying broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. It's also important to learn how to identify the signs of skin cancer, and if you see anything suspicious on your skin, to visit a board-certified dermatologist. Early detection should be part of everyone's game plan."WHAT:Chicago Bears and the American Academy of Dermatology's SPOT me™ Skin Cancer Screening WHEN:Saturday, August 2 – 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.WHERE:Chicago Bears Meijer Family Fest, Soldier Field (1410 Museum Campus Dr, Chicago, IL 60605)PRICE:FREE skin cancer screeningsTo learn more about skin cancer prevention and detection and to find a free SPOT me™ skin cancer screening near you, visit

About SPOT me™
In order to continue to increase public awareness of melanoma and expand the number of free skin cancer screenings across the country, Bristol-Myers Squibb donated its melanoma awareness campaign, Melanoma Exposed™, to the Academy. Bristol-Myers Squibb's donation of Melanoma Exposed™, provided through a charitable grant, includes a five-year contribution to the Academy, totaling more than $4 million. The Academy has integrated the Melanoma Exposed™ program into its national skin cancer screening program and is re-branding all of its screenings as SPOT me™, a part of the Academy's larger SPOT Skin Cancer™ initiative.

Since 1985, Academy dermatologists have conducted more than 2.4 million free skin cancer screenings and have detected nearly 238,000 suspicious lesions, including more than 26,500 suspected melanomas. To learn more about the SPOT me™ campaign and to find free skin cancer screenings near you, visit

American Academy of Dermatology
Headquartered in Schaumburg, Ill., the American Academy of Dermatology (Academy), founded in 1938, is the largest, most influential, and most representative of all dermatologic associations. With a membership of more than 17,000 physicians worldwide, the Academy is committed to: advancing the diagnosis and medical, surgical and cosmetic treatment of the skin, hair and nails; advocating high standards in clinical practice, education, and research in dermatology; and supporting and enhancing patient care for a lifetime of healthier skin, hair and nails. For more information, contact the Academy at 1-888-462-DERM (3376) or Follow the Academy on Facebook (American Academy of Dermatology) or Twitter (@AADskin).

Bears contact:
Jim Christman
(847) 739-5221

American Academy of Dermatology contacts:
Missy Lundberg
(847) 240-1734

Meghan Campbell
(415) 205-8872

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SOURCE American Academy of Dermatology
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