Payne Named Co-Chair of Congressional Men’s Health Caucus

Apr 2, 2015 Issues: Health Care

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. (NJ-10) has been named the co-chair of the newly reauthorized Congressional Men’s Health Caucus, alongside Congressman Markwayne Mullin (OK-2). The Caucus is dedicated to raising awareness about men’s health issues, encouraging men and boys to take an active role in their personal health, and promoting legislation that will improve the health and well-being of men, boys, and their families.

“I am pleased to join Congressman Markwayne Mullin in leading the Congressional Men’s Health Caucus,” said Congressman Payne, Jr. “After witnessing my father lose his battle to colorectal cancer, it became my mission to raise awareness about the importance of preventive care and to help reduce health disparities across diseases, from cancer to diabetes. As co-chair of the Caucus, I look forward to continuing this important work and to encouraging men to be proactive about their health.”

“I consider fitness a necessity to a good life,” said Congressman Mullin. “So I’m proud to help lead the Men’s Health Caucus in its mission to promote healthy living across the country. It’s incredibly important that our nation’s youth understand how to exercise and eat right so that they can live healthy, productive lives.”

The Caucus has established a Prostate Cancer Task Force with the aim of increasing the public’s awareness of prostate cancer, the most prevalent form of cancer in men. The Caucus will also focus on topics of importance to military veterans, including mental health conditions related to military service.

“Men live sicker and die younger than women. They have unique risks at each stage of life,” said Dr. David Gremillion, a member of the Men’s Health Network Board of Directors and former President of the Society of Air Force Physicians. “Men’s Health Network greatly appreciates the commitment of the Men’s Health Caucus for their efforts on behalf of improving the health status of men, including veterans of the Armed Services.”

The Men’s Health Caucus has previously led briefings on topics including prostate cancer screening, traumatic brain injury, and urological health issues. The Caucus plans to continue these efforts to educate Congress and the general public about important topics in men’s health.  

“Men’s health issues have never existed in a vacuum,” said Dr. Jean Bonhomme, Founder and Executive Director of the National Black Men’s Health Network and member of the Men’s Health Network Board of Directors. “Men’s illnesses impair family stability and can undermine the health of women and children directly, emotionally and economically. The establishment of a Congressional Men’s Health Caucus promises benefits to society reaching far beyond men as a demographic and is an indispensable step towards building a complete and inclusive health care system.”