Biden to outline plan to halve cancer death rate

WASHINGTON — President Biden will unveil a plan on Wednesday to cut the cancer death rate by at least 50% over the next 25 years — an am...


WASHINGTON — President Biden will unveil a plan on Wednesday to cut the cancer death rate by at least 50% over the next 25 years — an ambitious new goal, senior administration officials say, for the moonshot cancer program he initiated and chaired five years ago as Vice President.

Mr. Biden and his wife, Jill Biden, will also announce a campaign to urge Americans to submit to missed screenings during the coronavirus pandemic, according to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity on Tuesday evening to preview the President’s announcement. Screening is important to reduce cancer deaths.

The President has a deep personal interest in cancer research; in 2015, his son Beau is dead glioblastoma, an aggressive brain cancer. The following year, President Barack Obama called Mr. Biden in his State of the Union address to lead the Moonshot program, with the goal of achieving “a decade of progress in cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment” in five years.

At the time, Congress authorized $1.8 billion over seven years; about $400 million of that money has yet to be allocated, and the National Cancer Institute, which oversees the initiative, says it has already spent $1 billion on more than 240 research projects. Senior officials said the White House would not announce any new funding commitments, but insisted there would be “solid funding going forward.”

Instead, the Bidens will set broad goals in a showy White House ceremony attended by about 100 people, including Vice President Kamala Harris, patients, caregivers, family members, researchers and members of Congress.

The White House is touting the event as another push from the president to “revive” the Moonshot program and “end cancer as we know it.” Specifically, Mr Biden will set a goal to more than halve the age-adjusted death rate – a statistic that takes into account expectations that older people are more likely to get sick and die – over the next 25 years. But there were few details on how that goal would be achieved.

“These are bold goals, and I have no doubt there will be mechanisms to achieve them,” said Ellen Sigal, founder of Friends of Cancer Research, which strives to support cancer research and provide new therapies to patients, who was informed about the plan.

Mr. Biden has already named Danielle Carnaval, who worked on the Moonshot program during the Obama administration, to help oversee the new version of the effort. Now, senior officials said, the president will create a “cancer cabinet” to coordinate the work of multiple government agencies.

The White House says more than 9.5 million cancer screenings have been missed in the United States as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Mr. Biden will ask the cancer institute, a branch of the National Institutes of Health, to coordinate with cancer treatment centers to offer screenings nationwide and to develop a program to accelerate the development of tests capable of detect several types. cancer at once.

Presidents since Richard M. Nixon have sought to fight cancer, of which there are more than 100 types of disease that can vary in how they grow, spread, and respond to treatment. the cancer institute estimates that nearly 40% of men and women will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives. the American Cancer Society estimates that there will be 1.9 million new cases of cancer in the United States this year and more than 609,000 cancer deaths.

Most experts no longer talk about “curing” cancer; this language is far too simplistic and the White House does not use it. But officials say substantial progress can be made in the fight against cancer with early diagnosis and improved treatments.

There have been great advances in cancer research, treatment and prevention in the five years since the original Moonshot program was announced. Targeted therapies help cancer patients live longer. Doctors can now detect cancers with a simple blood test. More refined colonoscopies prevent more colon cancers.

“The original moonshot demonstrated that it was possible to compress a decade of progress into a few years,” Ms Sigal said, adding, “We can’t afford not to make this opportunity a new reality.”

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Newsrust - US Top News: Biden to outline plan to halve cancer death rate
Biden to outline plan to halve cancer death rate
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