The U.S. cancer care delivery system is undergoing profound changes to better meet the needs of people with cancer, but persistent hurdles threaten to slow progress, according to ASCO's fourth annual State of Cancer Care in America report released March 22, 2017.
ASCO in Action regularly provides the latest news and analysis related to cancer policy news; see the following online articles. These updates provide snapshots of ASCO’s ongoing advocacy efforts, as well as opportunities for ASCO members and guests to take action on critical issues affecting the cancer community.
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We soundly oppose President Trump’s budget outline, which would cut $6 billion from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Reducing NIH’s funding by nearly 20 percent will devastate our nation’s already fragile federal research infrastructure and undercut a longstanding commitment to biomedical science that has fueled advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
On March 1, ASCO joined many national, state, and local organizations led by NDD United in sending a letter to Congress urging legislators to avoid making further reductions to nondefense discretionary or “NDD” government programs. NDD United formed in 2012 in response to the Budget Control Act of 2011, which established automatic across-the-board cuts to NDD programs. These NDD programs include medical research, public health, and other key programs critical to patients with cancer.
On Feb. 15, 2017, ASCO leadership and members of the ASCO Government Relations Committee (GRC) met with key federal agency and congressional committee staff to discuss ASCO's top policy priorities. Discussions focused on federal efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA), implementation of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) and the 21st Century Cures Act, among other matters.
ASCO joined a letter from the Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research urging Congress and the Administration to enact a final fiscal year (FY) 2017 spending bill that includes $34.1 billion for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The letter also asks Congress and the Administration to make the NIH a priority as they consider funding for FY 2018.
In a congressional briefing on Capitol Hill, ASCO presented Clinical Cancer Advances 2017: ASCO's Annual Report on Progress Against Cancer, announced immunotherapy 2.0 as the advance of the year, and urged Congress to support increased federal funding for research.
ASCO has submitted comments to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in response to a Request for Information (RFI) on data sharing and management (NOT-OD-17-015).
On January 3rd, the 115th Session of the U.S. Congress got underway. One of the first orders of business was appointing new leadership of Committees, including those with jurisdiction over issues of importance to cancer-related policy.