October 12, 2018
October 12, 2018
HR 6157, the spending bill which recently passed and set funding for the Departments of Labor, Defense and Health and Human Services in FY 2019, includes $10 million for melanoma research funded through the Department of Defense (DoD).
Active and retired members of our military are more vulnerable to skin cancer than other populations. According to the 2014 Military Medicine Study, the rate of new skin cancer cases among active duty military members between 2000 and 2007 was 62 percent greater than the general population.
Since FY 2009, DoD’s Peer Reviewed Cancer Research program (PRCRP) has funded high-impact research for cancer prevention, detection, treatment and survivorship across several cancer subtypes. Last year, PRCRP awarded $80 million in funding to researchers, but skin cancer researchers had to compete for funding with other types of cancer. Now, skin cancer research is guaranteed $10 million in funding for FY 2019.
The Prevent Cancer Foundation® is proud to stand with the National Council on Skin Prevention in support of this measure, and we applaud Congress for recognizing the burden of skin cancer among members of our military. The Foundation looks forward to continued innovation in melanoma prevention, early detection and treatment.
Senator Tammy Baldwin this week filed a discharge petition against the Trump administration’s ruling on short-term health insurance plans. The petition was signed by 47 senators and brought to a floor vote on Wednesday, where it was narrowly defeated with a 50-50 vote (the measure needed a majority 51 votes to pass).
Previously, these short-term insurance plans could not exceed three months and were intended to be a stop-gap while transitioning to coverage under another employer or a different policy. However, under the new rule, short-term plans can be extended up to 364 days, with policy renewals up to 36 months.
While monthly premiums for short-term health insurance plans may be less expensive than other marketplace plans, they also offer fewer benefits and higher deductibles. If you are diagnosed with cancer while covered by a short-term insurance plan, you may be left without adequate coverage for treatment and care. These lower-cost plans may also lead currently healthy people away from the marketplace, effectively raising premiums for others.
It’s estimated that more than 1.7 million Americans will be diagnosed with cancer this year alone. With short-term health insurance plans, their access to quality cancer care will be at risk.
We commend the Senators who challenged these short-term plans to ensure patients have access to the care they need.
Last Friday, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the use of Gardasil 9 in men and women ages 27 to 45. Previously, the vaccine was approved for use up to age 26.
Gardasil 9 protects against nine strains of human papillomavirus (HPV), a virus that can cause at least six types of cancer and is the cause of almost all cervical and anal cancers. By getting vaccinated, you can protect yourself from the virus and ultimately, prevent cancer.
So far no recommendations have been issued on the use of the vaccine in this population. We will continue to monitor for additional information.
Read the FDA’s full statement to learn more.
Mark your calendars! The Prevent Cancer Foundation® will host its annual Advocacy Workshop on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 at the Hilton Crystal City in Arlington, Virginia.
Registration for the workshop is free and open to the public. If you have a passion for advocating for prevention and early detection issues, we’d love to see you there!
We’ll be releasing more information about the agenda and speakers as they are confirmed. Stay tuned for more information in the coming months.