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Florida Cancer Leaders Highlight Importance of Clinical Trials

August 7, 2018

LAKE NONA, Fla. —Aug. 7, 2018—More than 50 people attended today’s Florida Policy Forum on Clinical Trials hosted by the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN).  The event brought together Florida research experts, government officials, patients and leaders from the cancer community to raise awareness about clinical trials in the state and review strategies for improving access and recruiting more diverse participants.

Clinical trials are studies in which people volunteer to take part in tests of new drugs or procedures. Doctors use clinical trials to develop new treatments for serious diseases, such as cancer, and they serve a vital role in studying all aspects of medicine.

The forum featured panel discussions with The Honorable James Grant (State Representative, District 64) as well as representatives from UF Health Shands Hospital, Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, Moffitt Cancer Center, Abbvie and Digestive Disease Consultants.

“Clinical trials provide access to promising new treatments for our patients and are essential to reduce the cancer burden in our state,” said Heather Youmans, ACS CAN’s senior government relations director in Florida. “Events like this one, which includes researchers from the leading cancer institutes across our state, help to remind all of us that improving access to clinical trials must be a priority.”

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) sponsors most government-funded cancer clinical trials. The NCI has a list of active studies (those currently enrolling patients), as well as some privately funded studies. The list can be found on their website at www.cancer.gov/clinicaltrials/ or by calling 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237).

Approximately 135,170 Floridians are projected to be diagnosed with cancer this year and 45,030 will die from the disease.

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.acscan.org.

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