40th Anniversary of the National Cancer Act

Everything that can be done by
government everything that can be done by voluntary agencies in this great powerful rich country now
will be done and that will give some hope and we hope
those hopes will not be disappointed but there’s no question that one that
stroke of a pen making cancer a priority for this
country saved a lot a lives. It’s actually changed to cancer picture
worldwide its biggest impact on the American Cancer Society was for us to
understand that we had to go from being a research and service organization into a
high impact public health change agency. So the organization the American Cancer Society became much more of a public health intervention
organization than it was back in 1971. One of the most important things
that came out the National Cancer Act is we started doing a lot of basic science
to study the disease. We started understanding a great deal
about the inner workings the cancer cell. We’ve even redefine cancer over the last
forty years. So our approach to the disease our
approach to treatment the disease our approach to prevention
of the disease has become much more advanced as
science taught us a great deal. More people each
year die of cancer in the United States than all the Americans who lost their lives
in World War II. This shows us what is at stake. When our organization got started most
people got cancer died and now most people who get cancer
survive and we have twelve million cancer survivors in the country first time
ever that would not have happened it were not for the National Cancer Act.
We are definitely winning the war on cancer. Since 1991 there has been an 18.3
percent decline in the death rate. Translated in the year 2008 130,000 people did not die of cancer because our cancer prevention
technologies, our cancer screening technologies, and our cancer treatment technologies. Many
of which came out of the National Cancer Act. Dr. Alva Letton, the President of the American Cancer Society. Thank you Mr.President. This bill we feel is a real great opportunity for America.
Probably the greatest thing that has ever been done by the United
States. And to you sir who asked for this to be a national priority. And to our friends in the congress who
gave us this bill. The two-and-a-half to a quarter-million
volunteers of the American Cancer Soceity asked that I express their appreciation. We are
truly grateful sir. Thanks to the National Cancer Act and the
work the American Cancer Society, cancer today is potentially the most
preventable and the most curable all of the major
life-threatening non-communicable diseases. And our job now building on that legacy
is to change that potentiality into a reality for all people.

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