|By Marketwire .||
|March 19, 2013 07:05 PM EDT||
WASHINGTON, DC -- (Marketwire) -- 03/19/13 -- LIVESTRONG Foundation Director of Health Policy, Loyce Pace Bass, MPH, testified today on Capitol Hill in favor of sustained U.S. funding to combat the growing threat from non-communicable diseases. Appearing on behalf of the Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) Roundtable, a coalition which the LIVESTRONG Foundation helped found, Pace Bass also emphasized the need to more effectively leverage both U.S. and global resources to prevent, diagnose and treat non-communicable diseases (NCDs). NCDs include cancer, diabetes, heart disease, lung disease and stroke. The hearing took place before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs.
"We must utilize U.S. resources more efficiently by linking NCDs and infectious disease programs in order to build health systems that enable countries to treat the whole person, not just individual diseases," said Pace Bass. "Otherwise, if we don't act swiftly, the burden of NCDs will undermine our investment and progress in global health and development."
According to the World Health Organization, NCDs are the leading cause of mortality in the world, killing 36 million in 2008 across the globe and accounting for more than 60 percent of all deaths. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and NCD Roundtable will urge Congress to maintain current funding in FY14 for Global Health Programs at the Department of Health and Human Services, Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development.
A frequent misconception is that nothing can be done to address global NCDs, but Francine, a teenage girl from Rwanda, is evidence to the contrary. Francine had a mass on her face growing for six months that turned out to be cancer. Because her district hospital was supported by Partners in Health, a U.S. community-based organization that brings modern medical science to those most in need, she received assistance from a private hospital and local staff from the Centers for Disease Control and a donation of chemotherapy. Less than a year later, Francine was cancer-free. Francine's experience not only became a protocol for her district hospital, but spurred the government of Rwanda to develop a national cancer plan.
"Even in the most remote and challenging settings, providing cancer care is often possible -- and the right thing to do," said Pace Bass. "By building on existing health care infrastructures, we can practically and affordably promote the prevention, early detection and timely and successful treatment of cancer."
Also on Tuesday, LIVESTRONG Foundation senior medical advisor Dr. Brandon Hayes-Lattin joined other breast cancer advocates to celebrate Women's History Month and the anniversary of The EARLY Act. The critical law, enacted in March 2010 as part of the Affordable Care Act, supports educating and empowering young women with breast cancer, an often-overlooked population. Joining event host Rep. Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), Dr. Hayes-Lattin highlighted a LIVESTRONG Foundation initiative that advocates for coverage for fertility preservation to remedy infertility, reduce patient distress and enable better treatment decision-making.
The LIVESTRONG Foundation supports policy initiatives at the global, federal and state levels that improve the lives of people affected by cancer today. To further advance its policy agenda in Washington and across the country, the Foundation recently hired Cameron Krier, JD, MPH as Director of Government Relations, who will be dedicated to advocating on behalf of the unique needs of the 14 million Americans affected by cancer. In 2013, the Foundation's specific policy goals include advocating for U.S. insurance reform, access to medicines worldwide, maintaining funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Institutes of Health domestically and globally, and changing industry standards in the areas of survivorship, health information technology and fertility preservation. As each successive generation of survivors lives longer, they will face more challenges -- practical, physical, emotional and beyond.
About the LIVESTRONG Foundation
The LIVESTRONG Foundation provides free cancer support services to help people cope with the financial, emotional and practical challenges that accompany the disease. Created in 1997 by cancer survivor and philanthropist Lance Armstrong, the Foundation is known for its powerful brand -- LIVESTRONG -- and for its advocacy on behalf of survivors and their families. With its iconic yellow LIVESTRONG wristband, the Foundation has become a symbol of hope and inspiration around the world. Since its inception, the Foundation has served 2.5 million people affected by the disease and raised more than $500 million to support cancer survivors. One of America's top cancer non-profit organizations, the Foundation enjoys a four-star rating from Charity Navigator and has been recognized by the National Health Council and the Better Business Bureau for its excellent governance, high standards and transparency. For more information, visit LIVESTRONG.org.