Did you know …
The potential years of life lost to childhood cancer and the potential years of life saved by treatment exceeds all other cancers.
In 2009 Cancer was funded at a level of approximately $5.6 Billion, however funding for childhood cancer research was approximately $180 million? However, this estimate could be regarded as liberal as some of the associated research might not be perceived as directly benefiting childhood cancer. Other more conservative estimates, put childhood cancer research funding as low as $30 million annually.
As a comparison, breast cancer with its overall 5 year survival rate of close to 90% received $843 million in Federal research funding! Breast cancer is the sixth most common cause of death by disease of women in America (behind heart disease, stroke, lung cancer, respiratory disease and Alzheimer’s). In comparison, cancer is the number one cause of death by disease of America’s children. In terms of person years life lost, the average age at diagnosis of breast cancer is 61, with a calculated 16 person years life lost.. In contrast, the average age that a child is diagnosed with cancer is 10. This calculates to 67 person years life lost. Sixty seven years of life lost when a child dies from cancer.
Our call to action is to increase the awareness of the incidence and devastation of this disease on America’s children. By raising awareness of the fact that childhood cancer remains the number one disease killer of America’s children, we can raise the awareness of the need for greater research funding.
Like breast cancer, childhood cancer has an international symbol “the gold ribbon”. The gold ribbon was created by parents of children with cancer and former Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation board member Gigi Thorsen. It’s first production as a lapel pin was funded by CCCF in 1997. Working together, we too can become successful cancer advocates through the promotion of the gold ribbon for childhood cancer, so that we too can build research funding and much needed cures for America’s littlest cancer patients.
What will it take for us to do more?