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Public Health Groups Close Ranks Against Tobacco Industry

Public Health Groups Close Ranks Against Tobacco Industry

WASHINGTON—The Administration’s demand that Congress strengthen areas of the proposed tobacco agreement (see article above) won praise from a number of organizations that had criticized the initial settlement as too weak. “The opportunity to enact the right tobacco policy has never been greater,” said John R. Seffrin, PhD, chief executive officer of the American Cancer Society.

The ACS has joined forces with 10 other major national public health organizations to garner grassroots support to help move the proposal through Congress quickly before momentum fades.

ASCO’s Position

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), in a statement issued a few days before the President’s address, also called for major changes to strengthen the proposed settlement.

Of special concern is the focus of the $25 billion research fund included in the tobacco settlement. The Society wants to see the fund sponsor a balanced portfolio of basic and clinical research on tobacco-related cancers and other diseases, and install a rigorous, science-based, peer-reviewed system for making grants.

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