Tell Congress to Fund Research Fairly (Part 2)
Last updated: June 2020
In Tell Congress to Fund Research Fairly (Part 1), Dusty breaks down the numbers and explains why lung cancer research needs increased funding.
Lung cancer comes out the loser here in so many ways. First, consider the many years of funding for these other programs at a level above $100 million. Meanwhile, zero dollars goes towards lung cancer research.
It's also about missed opportunities in research
It is not only about the money. It also is about missed opportunities in research. After all, that is why these programs exist.
If rising cancer researchers are smart, they will go into a lucrative field of study. So, when lung cancer is not funded fairly, that field of study is robbed of promising new researchers.
Appropriations for FY20 for Breast, Prostate, and Lung Cancer Research Programs are $150 Million, $110 Million, and $14 Million, respectively.
A reasonable, even modest, request for lung cancer research funding would be one that is comparable to the other major cancer research programs. In fact, if the Lung Cancer Research Program were funded at $140 million, reflecting a 10-fold increase, it would still receive approximately 7 percent less than the Breast Cancer Research Program.
The fight for equitable funding
Cancer research must be funded equitably, with consideration for its relative impact on Americans’ health.
Nobody wants to pit one cancer against another. No cancer is good. Yet, we need to put proper perspective on these different cancers. Breast cancer’s survival rate is approximately 90 percent. Prostate cancer’s survival rate is approximately 98 percent. Lung cancer’s survival rate is only 20 percent.
Lung cancer has the most deaths of any cancer and is the least funded of the top three CDMRP-funded cancer research programs. We deserve a fair and equitable slice of the cancer research pie. No more. No less.
What will it take to prioritize lung cancer?
Also, for another perspective, consider the number of lung cancer deaths compared to COVID-19. Lung cancer claims tens of thousands of Americans each and every year. COVID-19 came out of nowhere and essentially shut the world down. Almost overnight, an unimaginable amount of research funding became available.
Until Congress makes lung cancer a priority, lung cancer will remain the number one cancer killer.
When it becomes apparent that tens of thousands who survived COVID-19 are disproportionately diagnosed with lung cancer, perhaps finally Congress will grasp a sense of urgency for funding lung cancer research.
Contact your representative in government
We are on the brink of amazing lung cancer treatment breakthroughs.1 However, tens of thousands of patients are running out of options while desperately waiting for scientists to discover their next treatment course. These patients will die without hope unless lung cancer research receives fair funding. Lung cancer patients deserve better. Funding for the No. 1 cancer killer is urgently needed. Now.
Please contact your U.S. Senator and Congressperson to request fair funding for lung cancer. Find your Senators and Congressman/woman and advocate for increased lung cancer research funding.
What healthy habits do you use to improve the quality of your life?