WASHINGTON, D.C. May 10, 2016 A poll, recently commissioned by the One Voice Against Cancer Coalition (OVAC), found that 89 percent of likely voters feel cancer research is too important to become a partisan issue and 81 percent favor an increase in federal funding for cancer research. American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) volunteers will head to Capitol Hill today with nearly 100 other cancer patients, survivors, caregivers, physicians and researchers representing 50 cancer organizations to share the poll results and urge lawmakers to make fighting cancer a top national priority. These advocates are uniting as part of the 17th annual OVAC lobby day to ask their legislators to fund cancer research at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and National Institutes of Health (NIH). Cancer doesn 't discriminate by race, religion, geographic region or political party, said David Pugach, ACS CAN federal relations director and OVAC chair. ACS CAN volunteers are uniting with cancer advocates from across the country to urge lawmakers to put politics aside and make cancer a national priority by guaranteeing robust and sustained funding that will help promote discovery necessary to eliminate death and suffering from this disease. OVAC volunteers will take part in scheduled meetings with Members of Congress and their staff. Together, OVAC volunteers will urge Congress to support the goals of the National Cancer Moonshot initiative in order to capitalize on promising new research and maintain momentum in ongoing discoveries. Specifically, they will ask Congress to:
- Provide at least $34.5 billion for the NIH, including $5.9 billion for the NCI,
- Fully fund the Cancer Moonshot initiative; and,
- Protect the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cancer programs and provide $514 million for these programs.
OVAC volunteers will also request that the Senate take up an Innovation for Healthier Americans Initiative legislative package that includes funding for the NIH and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). For decades, research supported by the National Institutes of Health and the National Cancer Institute has played a key role in virtually every major cancer prevention, detection and treatment discovery, Pugach said. While recent funding increases for the NIH and NCI have begun to reverse course after years of flat or cut funding, overall funding for cancer research is still well below where it was a decade ago. Congress should seize this important opportunity to get cancer progress back on track. Nearly 1.7 million people will be newly diagnosed with the cancer in America this year and cancer is expected to kill an estimated 595,000 people in this country more than 1,600 today. æAnnual cancer incidence rates are projected to increase by 31 percent over the next decade, growing to 2.1 million people diagnosed with cancer in 2025. For a link to the polling memo, click here. For a full list of the OVAC health care groups joining ACS CAN in this year 's lobby day, visit http://ovaconline.org/members.html. ACS CAN, the nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, supports evidence-based policy and legislative solutions designed to eliminate cancer as a major health problem. ACS CAN works to encourage elected officials and candidates to make cancer a top national priority. ACS CAN gives ordinary people extraordinary power to fight cancer with the training and tools they need to make their voices heard. For more information, visit www.fightcancer.org. FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT: Alissa Crispino or Jill Courtney American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network Phone: 202-661-5772 or 202-585-3278 E-mail: [email protected] or [email protected]