Advocates Set Sights on Cancer Prevention & Detection in 2024, Respond to Governor’s Budget with Avenues to Reduce Cancer Burden in NY

Four weeks after historic biomarker testing bill was signed into law, ACS CAN reacts to Governor’s budget and unveils its legislative vision for 2024

January 17, 2024

ALBANY, NY – JANUARY 17, 2024 – With her budget address yesterday, the character of Governor Hochul’s 2024 legislative agenda comes into focus, leading advocates to react and highlight opportunities to reduce the cancer burden in New York in 2024.

The following is a statement from the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network’s (ACS CAN) Senior Government Relations Director Michael Davoli:

“In 2023, New York State delivered for its residents, prioritizing access to care with the passage of the biomarker testing bill. This legislation will equip countless New Yorkers who have received a cancer diagnosis with critical information about their disease and how to fight it. Now, it’s time to pursue legislative opportunities that will help prevent New Yorkers from receiving a cancer diagnosis in the first place and help detect cancer early.

“While Governor Hochul’s State of the State address did not outline opportunities in the fight against cancer, her proposed 2024-2025 budget does with investments to improve cancer screening, reduce tobacco use and more. Unfortunately, the budget falls short of what is needed to prevent more New Yorkers from being diagnosed with and dying from cancer.

“Governor Hochul and the Legislature displayed a commitment to the fight against cancer in last year’s final budget by including a $2.5 million increase in funding to the New York State Cancer Services Program (CSP), assuring thousands of more under- and un-insured New Yorkers will have access to breast, cervical and colorectal cancer screening and a $7.5 million increase in the New York State Tobacco Control Program (TCP).  

“Unfortunately, Governor Hochul’s 2024 proposed budget did not sustain the $2.5 million increase for CSP from last year. Rather, she has proposed reducing the budget to $19.8 million, annually—an allocation which only enables the CSP to reach 18% of the eligible population in New York. One-time increases to programs that provide year-after-year benefits to low-income New Yorkers prohibits our state from achieving sustainable improvements in health equity. ACS CAN urges Governor Hochul to commit to a sustained increase in annual CSP funding equivalent to last year’s increase and forgo one-off infusions.

“We lost an estimated 31,320 New Yorkers to cancer in 2023, approximately 6,330 of whom died from lung cancer. To ensure that fewer New Yorkers are lost to lung cancer in 2024 and beyond, ACS CAN will be pursuing a robust agenda to lower lung cancer incidence and mortality rates. This will start with legislation to establish a lung cancer education, screening and treatment program to ensure that New Yorkers who are advised, under the American Cancer Society lung cancer screening guidelines, to receive routine screening have access to lung cancer screening and, for those diagnosed with lung cancer via the NYS Medicaid Cancer Treatment Program, treatment. 

“Additionally, ACS CAN will advocate for legislation to require insurance plans, including Medicaid, to provide a comprehensive benefit for lung cancer screening, addressing current financial barriers to prevention.

“Though efforts to eliminate barriers to cancer screenings are invaluable in this fight, cancer prevention in New York cannot be solely defined by residents’ access to early detection services. We need to be proactive, reducing the presence of cancer-causing products in New Yorkers’ lives. The best course for lawmakers to achieve this is through tobacco cessation.

“The Governor reduced funding for the New York State Tobacco Control Program (TCP) to $39.8 million in her proposed budget. Despite the TCP’s record of success, the 2024-2025 Executive budget proposal is less than half of what it was at its peak of $85 million in 2008 and far less than the $106 million the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends New York spend on its tobacco control program. More funding is needed to help ensure the program can reach New Yorkers who need it most.

“As the Legislature looks to alleviate the burden of disease from New Yorkers facing cancer and other illnesses, ACS CAN will join our partners in advocating for legislation that will grant New Yorkers better access to paid medical leave and help ensure that medical debt does not lock patients into a lifetime of financial toxicity. We are pleased to see that Governor Hochul has included proposals addressing both issues. We look forward to reviewing the details of the proposals and working with the Legislature to ensure they are passed.”

To see the complete list of ACS CAN’s 2024 legislative priorities visit


About ACS CAN 

The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) advocates for evidence-based public policies to reduce the cancer burden for everyone.  As the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN is making cancer a top priority for public officials and candidates at the federal, state, and local levels. By engaging advocates across the country to make their voices heard, ACS CAN influences legislative and regulatory solutions that will end cancer as we know it. 

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