Should Children's Hospitals Protect Patients From Hazardous Hot Dogs? 

Girl in hospital with hot dog

The World Health Organization has stated that processed meats, including hot dogs, are "carcinogenic to humans" and that there is no amount safe for consumption. Hot dogs are also the No. 1 choking risk for children.

If you think children's hospitals should exclude cancer-causing hot dogs from patient meals, and instead provide healthful, plant-based options, please sign the letter below to hospital CEOs.

Or send a tweet to children's hospitals using the hashtag #HazardousHotDogs! Sample tweets:

Several children's hospitals located in the colon cancer corridor, a cluster of nine states with high death rates from colorectal cancer, are serving cancer-causing hot dogs to patients, according to a survey by the Physicians Committee.

These hospitals include:

  • Arkansas Children's Hospital in Little Rock
  • Children's Hospital of Alabama at University of Alabama in Birmingham
  • Children's Hospital at OU Medical Center in Oklahoma City 
  • Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt in Nashville
  • Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

 

Please sign this letter that will be sent to the CEOs of the hospitals listed.

Dear Hospital CEO:

I am writing to urge you to exclude hot dogs from patient menus. Hot dogs are the  No. 1 choking risk for children and are linked to high risk of colon cancer. Your hospital is located in the colon cancer corridor, a cluster of nine states with high death rates from colorectal cancer.

The World Health Organization warns that processed meats, including hot dogs, are "carcinogenic to humans" and there is no amount safe for consumption. According to a recent study published in JAMA Surgery, colon cancer is increasing in young people (ages 20 to 34 years). "Particularly worrisome is the role of processed meats in children's diets," says Mariana C. Stern, Ph.D., a co-author of the WHO report. "Parents should know the risks associated with processed meats and learn to make alternative choices."

At least four children’s hospitals located in the colon cancer corridor, including West Virginia University Children's Hospital, already exclude hot dogs from patient menus. March, which is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month would be a perfect time for your hospital to do likewise and demonstrate your commitment to children's health.

In order to promote healing and prevent disease, your children's hospital should increase the offerings of healthful, plant-based options that are popular with patients—like veggie chili and fruit smoothies.

Sincerely,

  Your info:

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Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
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Phone: 202-686-2210 Email: pcrm@pcrm.org

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