Do you remember the sequester? Do you think everything is back to normal because time has passed? Well, it isn’t; sequester-caused cuts to cancer research are still in place. Because of these cuts, 1,000 fewer people were able to enroll in potentially lifesaving clinical trials this past year. The National Institutes of Health, the nation’s medical research center, has lost more than $1.5 billion. This reality has caused cancer research labs in our state to put promising work on hold and to eliminate research jobs.
The across-the-board cuts to federally funded cancer research could cost us the progress we have made in the fight against cancer. This progress is critically important because it is estimated that 37,290 Washingtonians will be diagnosed with cancer this year. For them, the cuts to cancer research may be the difference between quality of life and days of pain and suffering, the difference between survivorship and death.
I urge members of Congress to do what’s right for cancer patients and their families and turn off the sequester. We’re counting on you for HOPE this holiday season.