Letter to the Editor: I am alive because of breakthroughs in research

Saturday, August 28, 2010

To the Editor:

I am a two-year breast cancer survivor and I am alive today because of breakthroughs in research.

Scientific research has produced effective tools for preventing and treating many cancers. The latest data shows a nearly 14 percent decrease in U.S. death rates from all cancers combined from 1991 to 2004.

Cancer-fighting drugs cost an average of $1 billion to create and can take more than a decade to be approved for use. That is why sustained federal funding is crucial to maintaining progress in the fight against cancer.

New screening tools and treatments won’t see the light of day if we halt our progress. To end all death and suffering related to cancer we must commit to making consistent funding a priority for a disease that affects far too many Americans.

Funding for cancer research is about more than dollars and cents. Funding for cancer research is about saving lives, finding better ways to treat cancer, and improving the quality of my life and the lives of the people I love.

I was lucky to benefit from cancer research and I’m calling on Congress to boost funding for the National Institutes of Health and for the National Cancer Institute to sustain research funding at last year’s levels so that progress can continue to save lives.

Peggy Sanders


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