Urgent Help Needed To Secure Senate Republican Co-Sponsorship of the STAR Act
The Childhood Cancer STAR Act – the most comprehensive childhood cancer bill ever considered by the U.S. Congress – is at a critical crossroads and needs your help securing support with additional co-sponsors from your state. We are asking you to take action today to move the bill forward by asking your U.S. Senators and Representatives to co-sponsor the Childhood Cancer STAR Act. Currently 164 Republican and 189 Democratic Representatives and Senators have signed on. Your assistance is greatly needed, especially in reaching out to your GOP Senators for co-sponsorship. Many Democratic Senators are waiting to sign on but we must have an equal number of Republican Senators ready to co-sponsor as well in order to maintain our commitment to demonstrating strong bipartisan support and momentum. Please click the following link to take action now –Childhood Cancer STAR Act 2017.
Last year the House of Representatives passed the Childhood Cancer STAR Act, but unfortunately the session ended before the bill could pass through the Senate and be signed into law. Now, a year later, our children and families affected by childhood cancer need help more than ever. It is a new Congress with a new agenda and a new set of priorities and we must fight to make sure progress towards passage of the Childhood Cancer STAR Act continues with even greater urgency. Our children no longer can wait. Childhood cancer must be a national child health priority.
Why is the Childhood Cancer STAR Act Important?
The STAR Act is designed to promote greater research efforts for childhood cancer by (a) expanding bio-specimen collections from childhood cancer patients enrolled in NCI-sponsored clinical trials capturing relevant clinical, biological and demographic data, (b) improving childhood cancer surveillance, (c) ensuring the inclusion of at least one pediatric oncologist on the National Cancer Advisory Board, (d) requiring reporting on childhood cancer research projects conducted by the NIH, (e) enhancing research on the late effects of childhood cancers and creating models of care leading to improved quality of life for survivors.
Approximately 1 out of every 285 children will be diagnosed with childhood cancer prior to their 20th birthday. Two out of every 10 children diagnosed will not survive, making childhood cancer the number one disease killer of children in the United States. Despite these stark facts, there have been just 4 drugs approved by the FDA to specifically treat childhood cancer in the last 3 decades. This compares to more than 120 drugs approved to treat adult cancer. The majority of children today continue to be treated with chemotherapy drugs that were developed in the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s, leaving the majority of survivors with long-term chronic health conditions resulting from the toxic therapies. The STAR Act is an important first step towards enhanced research on behalf of children fighting cancer.
We need your help to ensure that this critical piece of legislation gets passed into law. In order to ensure passage through committee and a successful vote by both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, we need co-sponsors – especially REPUBLICAN SENATORS. Please, use the language written here, or draft your own to tell your story to explain why this legislation is so important, and to urge your Senators and Representative(s) to add their name to the growing list of co-sponsors.Then be sure to thank them for their support in making childhood cancer a national child health priority.Thank you!