In a White House event Wednesday, President Joe Biden announced the revival of the government’s cancer “moonshot” project, with the goal of halving the disease’s death rate in the United States.
The ambitious initiative began in 2016 with $1.8 billion in federal cash divided over seven years. Only $400 million is still available to cover the fiscal years of this year and 2023.
As Vice President under Barack Obama, Biden, whose son Beau died of brain cancer in 2015 at the age of 46, sponsored the initial endeavor. He told a crowded gathering in the White House that he wants to resurrect “an American moment.”
“This is a presidential priority, referring to the goal of “putting an end to cancer as we know it.” He spoke.
The aim, according to Biden, is to reduce today’s age-adjusted cancer death rate by half over the next 25 years.
He advocated doing so by taking the lead in mobilizing resources for a more concerted effort by patients, hospitals, biopharmaceutical firms, and researchers.
A White House Cancer Moonshot coordinator has been appointed, and a cross-government cabinet will supervise priorities such as expanding and restructuring cancer screening networks.
An emphasis is also being placed on resolving racial disparities in cancer care access.
A particularly critical measure, according to Biden, is to clear the backlog of nine million cancer tests caused by canceled appointments during the Covid-19 outbreak.
“Screening is how you catch things early before it’s too late, adding that he was aware that a check-up may be frightening.” He explained
The name of the endeavor is an intentional homage to NASA’s 1969 success in landing the first humans on the Moon.
However, no additional money has been revealed as of yet.
Biden encouraged Congress to assist, and a senior source told reporters that he was “quite certain” that “vigorous money” would be provided.
“I’ve got to say, in these times of dispute, there’s surely one issue on which we all agree, across party lines, across everything and that’s the impact of cancer on their lives,” the official added on the condition of anonymity.
“I don’t know of anything that unifies us more and is more nonpartisan.”