How the Sequester Hurts Cancer Patients

Budget cuts are slicing into clinical trials.

Genetic lab.
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Leaving critical research like this to languish in labs rather than building on it and bringing it to the bedside is not only a tragic waste of resources, it will lead to an unnecessary loss of lives. Cancer research requires a commitment to stable and ongoing fiscal support. If Congress does not commit to a long-term solution to these challenges, research data will be lost and cutting-edge projects won’t reach their potential.

We understand lawmakers have tough decisions to make in this budget environment. However, a disease that is expected to kill 580,000 Americans this year is inherently a national priority.

As Congress prepares its fiscal year 2014 budget, lawmakers must put politics aside and prioritize the fight against a disease that does not discriminate based on political party, race, religion or creed. Without a national commitment to restore, increase and sustain investment in medical research, cancer will continue to take too many of our loved ones.

John R. Seffrin, Ph.D., is the CEO of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network.

Michael A. Caligiuri, M.D., is the CEO of the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center- James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute and American Association for Cancer Research board member.

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