Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content

Emphasizing Primary Prevention of Cancer

Nurse vaccinating a girl with her mother.

Stopping Cancer Before It Starts
Putting the National Comprehensive Cancer Control Program Priorities into Action

View printable document [PDF-458KB]

The easiest way to fight cancer is to stop it before it starts. Many cancers are preventable. Primary prevention helps people choose healthy behaviors to lower their risk of getting cancer.

We can prevent cancer by—

  • Promoting and providing vaccines that prevent cancer.
    • Example: Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine
  • Supporting environmental approaches that make healthy choices easier where we live, play, and work.
    • Example: Smoke-free policies
  • Empowering and educating people to make healthy lifestyle choices related to—
    • Tobacco use
    • Nutrition
    • Physical activity
    • Sun safety


Examples of Successful NCCCP Activities Focusing on Primary Prevention

Map of the United States with Kansas, Louisiana, and South Dakota highlighted.

  • South DakotaHPV Vaccination Program
    Client reminders and provider feedback within an integrated health system increase HPV vaccination coverage.
  • LouisianaBreathe Easy in the Big Easy
    Tobacco education program informs a smoke-free law for indoor worksites and public places, including bars and casinos.
  • KansasPool Cool Education Program
    Sun safety messages teach kids how to prevent skin cancer and increase sun protection habits.

Cancer Prevention and Control Works

Communities can prevent and control cancer when they have the right partners, plans, and solutions. CDC’s NCCCP is leading cancer prevention and control efforts that are saving lives and supporting survivors. Visit NCCCP Success Stories for more examples of comprehensive cancer control in action.