Advocate’s Corner: June 2024

Chad Ramsey standing in front of Capitol
Chad Ramsey, OCRA’s Vice President, Policy

June is Uterine Cancer Awareness Month and OCRA is dedicated to fighting on behalf of not only the ovarian cancer community but the entire gynecologic cancer community. Uterine cancer is the most common gynecologic cancer in high-income countries, and around 90% of uterine cancers are endometrial cancer types — one of the few cancers experiencing an increase in mortality.

At OCRA’s 2024 Spring Advocacy Day, our advocates urged their congressional representatives to increase funding for vital research into ovarian and related gynecologic cancers. This included pushing for $10M in funding for a new Endometrial Cancer Research Program in the Department of Defense’s (DoD) Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP). While they did not create an endometrial cancer program for fiscal year 2024, it was acknowledged that the priority for further research on endometrial cancer is critical and that in the absence of a dedicated program, this research will be done within the existing Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program (PRMRP), currently funded at $110M.

OCRA’s work continues to advocate for funding for this new program and many others, and we will keep pressing for expanded federal resources for fiscal year 2025. This funding will play a major role in future research and innovations, and will have real impact on people across the country who have been or could be affected by gynecologic cancer. 

With so many competing priorities, it is crucial that Congress understands the importance of funding these programs. If you have not done so already, add your voice to the fight and urge Congress to consider the below funding levels in their budget discussions for fiscal year 2025: 

  • $15M for Johanna’s Law to promote education and awareness around all gynecologic cancers.
  • $20M for the Ovarian Cancer Control Initiative to improve provider education, high-risk screening, and clinical adherence to ovarian cancer practice guidelines.
  • $50M for the Ovarian Cancer Research Program within the DoD’s Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP) – the only program dedicated to ovarian cancer research within the federal government.
  • $10M for a new Endometrial Cancer Research Program at CDMRP to help address one of the few cancers experiencing an increase in mortality.

Recent reports indicate that the House Appropriations Committee is considering significant cuts to health-related programs, including a 22% decrease in recommended CDC funding. This action could dramatically impair the efforts to improve care that we have fought for over the years. 

OCRA stands with every member of the gynecologic cancer community to urge Congress to work together to ensure that research, care, and education programs continue and expand.

Thank you for joining us in this fight,

Chad Ramsey, Vice President, Policy

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