This September leadership and advocates from the Association of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) are set to participate in various events commemorating Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.
In the U.S., cancer is the leading cause of death by disease among children and in 2018 there were 483,000 childhood cancer survivors. Children with cancer face unique health concerns that often require specialized care, and ASCO is committed to ensuring that patients, survivors, and their families have access to quality, equitable care. Childhood Cancer Awareness Month is dedicated to raising awareness on childhood cancer, celebrate advancements made in cancer treatment and care for children, as well as promote ongoing research to create more opportunities to conquer the disease in this population.
ASCO is supporting two additional legislative priorities to advance research and care for pediatric cancer:
- The Childhood Cancer Survivorship, Treatment, Access and Research (STAR) Reauthorization Act (H.R. 7630/S. 4120): This legislation would reauthorize STAR Act program funding for the next five years. Signed into law in June 2018, the Childhood Cancer STAR Act expands opportunities for childhood cancer research, improves efforts to identify and track cancer incidences, and enhances the quality of life for childhood cancer survivors.
- The Accelerating Kids’ Access to Care Act (H.R. 3089/S. 1544): This legislation would create an alternative opt-in pathway for healthcare providers in good standing to enroll in Medicaid programs in multiple states, allowing them to provide essential, time-sensitive care to children with cancer.
Members of the oncology community can use the ACT Network to urge their members of Congress to cosponsor and support these bills.
ASCO is participating in several events:
- September 13: Alliance for Childhood Cancer Hill Day, which will advocate for the two previously mentioned pieces of legislation (The Childhood Cancer STAR Reauthorization Act and The Accelerating Kids’ Access to Care Act). ASCO Past President, Michael Link, MD, will be in attendance.
- September 22: Annual Childhood Cancer Summit hosted by the Congressional Childhood Cancer Caucus, a gathering for advocates, doctors, and survivors to raise awareness for the pediatric cancer community.
- September 23: White House Childhood Cancer briefing, which will include discussions on the Childhood Cancer Data Initiative (CCDI), the Research to Accelerate Cures and Equity (RACE) for Children Act, and the STAR Act.
Stay updated on all of ASCO’s efforts around childhood cancer advocacy and pediatric oncology through ASCO in Action.