New Cancer Programs, Office of Cancer Survivorship Announced

December 1, 1996

WASHINGTON--Before a group of reporters assembled in the White House Rose Garden, President Clinton recently announced three new federal cancer programs that he predicted would "bring us closer to a cure and improve the lives of those who do survive."

WASHINGTON--Before a group of reporters assembled in the WhiteHouse Rose Garden, President Clinton recently announced threenew federal cancer programs that he predicted would "bringus closer to a cure and improve the lives of those who do survive."

President Clinton announced additional funds for studies aimedat deciphering the genetics of breast cancer; a new Web site onthe Internet to provide the public with information on breastcancer (see box); and the opening of the Office of Cancer Survivorshipat the National Cancer Institute.

Congress increased NCI's budget 5.8% to $2.4 billion in fiscal1997, which began Oct. 1, 1996. In his press conference, PresidentClinton said that $30 million from the increase in funds wouldgo to expand genetic studies of breast cancer. "This steprepresents a major increase in breast cancer genetic research,"he said.

In a separate statement, NCI Director Richard D. Klausner announcedthat Anna T. Meadows, MD, would head the new Office of CancerSurvivorship, which officially began operations within NCI's Divisionof Cancer Treatment, Diagnosis, and Centers on Nov. 1.

"We need to look at questions beyond the acute diagnosisand treatment of cancer--beyond prevention," Dr. Klausnersaid, "and deal with the many research issues that survivorsof cancer face in their daily lives so that there will be a betterquality of life for all." The new office will explore suchissues as long-term medical and psychological effects of cancertreatment, factors that predispose cancer survivors to the developmentof second malignancies, reproduction and fertility problems followingcancer treatments, and the genetic factors that confront cancerpatients.

Early in November, Dr. Meadows convened a 2-day meeting of expertsfrom a number of disciplines to discuss and help set a researchagenda for her office.

Dr. Meadows joined NCI on a part-time basis in July and will continueher relationship with the Children's Hospital of Philadelphiaand retain her title as professor of pediatrics at the Universityof Pennsylvania Medical School, the NCI statement said.

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Breast Cancer Web Site

The National Action Plan on Breast Cancer Web Site (http://www.NAPBC.org),coordinated by the Office of Women's Health at HHS, is designedto expand the flow of information to the public about the disease."It will answer the questions women have about early detection,clinical trials, and much more," President Clinton said inhis announcement.