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Advocacy Update - September 16, 2011
09.16.11

September 16, 2011

Advocates in Action

Tennessee – Darlene Jessee, Northeast Tennessee Support Group leader attended a Harley Davidson 9/11 Remembrance Ride on September 13 where Representative Phil Roe was a speaker. She had the opportunity to pull him aside and tell him about HR 2746, the Cancer Coverage Parity Act of 2011. As a physician he seemed interested in learning more. His assistant took Darlene’s phone number to give to Rep. Roe’s Health LA. She did receive a call but unfortunately was not home to answer it. She plans to follow up with his office this week.    

California – San Diego Support Group leader, Elliot Recht met with Representative Susan Davis earlier this month in a small group from LLS. Rep. Davis is extremely supportive of healthcare issues and was receptive to HR 2746. She agreed with the points Elliot made and took all of the information given to her.  The IMF Advocacy team also intends to follow up with her office this week.

Washington –. Hank Koepfle from Walla Walla, Washington wrote an opinion piece on the importance of cancer research funding that was published in the Walla Walla Union Bulletin. In his letter (dated May 1) he stated his disappointment in the proposed budget cuts to cancer research funding. “Cancer is a national killer and has to be dealt with on a national level,” Hank said. “This is a deadly serious problem and it must be funded in order to find a cure.”

Thank you Darlene, Elliot, and Hank for your initiative and hard work!

Pennsylvania – The IMF invites you to join the Central PA Chapter of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society for the Pennsylvania Mission Day on Wednesday, September 28, 8 am to 12:30 pm at the Capitol Building in Harrisburg.

Volunteers will be provided with an overview of the legislative issue and tips to meeting with legislators. The informational session will be followed by a press conference, meetings with your state legislators and an advocate wrap-up session.

We look forward to you joining us in Harrisburg to voice support for the passage of legislation that will help to ensure equal coverage for oral chemotherapies for all cancer patients throughout Pennsylvania!

For more information, please contact Meghan Buzby at mbuzby@myeloma.org.

Happenings on the Hill

Three Cosponsors for HR 2746, the Cancer Coverage Parity Act of 2011
Representatives Steve Israel (D-NY), Joe Baca (D-CA), and Barney Frank (D-MA) have signed on as cosponsors of HR 2746, the Cancer Coverage Parity Act.  HR 2746 requires health insurance coverage of oral anticancer drugs on terms no less favorable than the coverage provided for intravenously (IV) administered anticancer medications.

IMF needs your help to build support for HR 2746 among Members of Congress.   To write your
U.S. Representative and ask them to co-sponsor HR 2746, click here.

James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act
In early January, the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act was signed into law securing health services and financial compensation for first responders who became ill from exposure to dangerous toxins at ground zero.

However, cancer was not included as a covered condition due to lack of medical evidence to prove a higher occurrence of cancer among ground zero workers.  Language included in the legislation allows the US World Trade Center Health Program to add cancer as a covered condition as medical evidence is published.
 
Recent medical evidence was published in The Lancet that showed an increased risk of cancer in firefighters that served at ground zero. Considering this new evidence, we strongly encourage you to push for coverage of cancer for all of the heroes of 9/11.

Please help us by writing to Dr. John Howard, head of the US World Trade Center Health Program TODAY and urge him to add coverage of cancer to the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act!

 

For more information about the legislation listed above or any other IMF advocacy initiative, contact IMF’s Director of Government Relations, Christine Murphy at cmurphy@myeloma.org or 703-738-1498.


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