As a child, she struggled with low platelet and red blood cell counts — an unusual combination of anemia in children. Doctors kept an eye on her health, and it would be three years before a genetic test of her bone marrow identified a duplicate chromosome that would ultimately lead to her Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS). If untreated, MDS becomes leukemia.
Childhood Cancer Advocates Spend Day on Capitol Hill Sharing Stories with Lawmakers
Patients, Survivors, and Families Advocate for Research Funding, Passage of STAR
WASHINGTON, D.C. – April 24, 2018 – Advocates from the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) will be on Capitol Hill today asking Congress to support initiatives that would increase research and improve treatment for children with cancer. The seventh annual Childhood Cancer Action Day, organized by the Alliance for Childhood Cancer, is a concerted legislative action day that aims to advance legislation that will expand research into pediatric cancers and create better outcomes for children currently living with cancer.
“While we have seen advancements in treatment that have led to markedly improved rates of survival for children diagnosed with cancer, the disease remains a leading cause of death among children under the age of 15,” said Chris Hansen, president of ACS CAN. “I’m proud to see childhood cancer patients, survivors, and their families once again bringing their stories to Capitol Hill today in an effort to elevate pediatric cancer as a priority issue for this Congress.”
ACS CAN advocates will meet with their members of Congress to ask for their support for increased funding for childhood cancer research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Cancer Institute. Additionally, ACS CAN volunteers continue to ask members of the House of Representatives to pass the Childhood Cancer Survivorship, Treatment, Access and Research (STAR) Act. The STAR Act, which was passed by the Senate earlier this year, represents the most comprehensive childhood cancer bill to ever be introduced in Congress.
“Congress must pass the STAR Act to move us forward in the fight against pediatric cancer,” said Hansen. “Enactment of this comprehensive piece of legislation would unleash efforts to provide researchers with the essential tools to fight pediatric cancer and help children during treatment and throughout the rest of their lives.”