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Lung Cancer Alliance Praises Growing National Coalition Call To Action For A More Comprehensive Federal Strategy To Address Lung Cancer

WASHINGTON, DC [December 8, 2009]--Today, Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) praised the growing coalition of national organizations joining LCA in its “call to action” to devise a better public health strategy to address the nation’s most lethal cancer.

The coalition, which currently includes national medical associations and institutions along with national veterans, minority health and advocacy groups, acknowledge lung cancer’s lethality, cite disease specific impact and thank congressional leadership for declaring lung cancer a national public health priority and requiring a comprehensive plan of action.

“It is only fitting, as we close out the most successful November Lung Cancer Awareness Month, that we pay tribute to the growing national coalition joining LCA in its “call to action” to demand better outcomes for all those affected by lung cancer, said Laurie Fenton-Ambrose LCA President & CEO. LCA is honored to stand beside these nationally and internationally respected voices and to draw upon their expert leadership in devising a more comprehensive and compassionate public health response to lung cancer”.    

The National Coalition currently includes:
The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC)
The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS)
The National Association of the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)
The National Council of La Raza (NCLR)
The National Hispanic Medical Association (NHMA)
The Asian Pacific Islander American Health Council (APIAHC)
Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO)
Military Officers of America Association (MOAA)
The Veterans Health Council
The Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA)
The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW)
The Disabled American Veterans (DAV)
The Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA)
Bonnie J. Addario Foundation for Lung Cancer
Joan’s Legacy: Uniting Against Lung Cancer
Protect Your Lungs Foundation
Thomas G. Labrecque Foundation
LUNGevity
Duke Medicine
Wake Forest University
Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
Yale Cancer Center
Society for Women's Health Research
Friends of Cancer Research
The University of Kentucky
The James Graham Brown Cancer Center at the University of Louisville
Wellstar Health System

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death.  This year alone it will claim over 160,000 lives -- more than the combined total deaths from breast, prostate, colon and pancreatic cancers. It is the leading cause of cancer death among men and women and among every ethnic group.

Military men and women are at an elevated risk of lung cancer as compared to the civilian population. Lung cancer has a 15% five year survival rate. Two out of every three lung cancer patients are former and non-smokers.  Over the next 20 years, the number of cancer cases particularly in older and minority individuals is expected to vastly increase with lung cancer among those with the greatest relative increase in incidence.  Yet lung cancer research funding lags significantly behind other major diseases.  

“This is how successful “movements” are grounded, continued Fenton-Ambrose, with grassroots and grass tops involvement.  We will continue our outreach to other national leaders and continue to expand our grassroots network.  With strong and diverse coalition backing -- I am confident that we will reach our “tipping point” -- and end lung cancer as we know it”.  

The Lung Cancer Mortality Reduction Act of 2009, introduced in both the United States Senate (S. 332) and House of Representatives (HR 2112), is first-ever authorizing legislation to declare lung cancer a national public health priority and require a coordinated and comprehensive federal response to address all aspects of the lethal disease.  For more information about the Lung Cancer Mortality Reduction Act and the current list of endorsers go to www.lungcanceralliance.org.

Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) is the only national organization dedicated solely to providing patient support and advocacy to all those living with or at risk for lung cancer.