Senator Hillary Clinton announced that she wants to increase breast cancer research funding by $300 million if elected president. Her campaign has said that finding a cure would be a top priority in her domestic policy. Catherine Brown, Clinton’s domestic policy director, said the extra funding would go toward researching a cure, discovering the causes and cutting treatment costs. Brown has also stated that Clinton’s goal is to increase funding to as much as $1.5 billion annually within the next decade.

Well, what about all the other cancers Americans face? Clinton, as well as all the potential presidential candidates, has been completely silent about cancer research, other then her commitment to breast cancer. Please do not misunderstand me, I would love to see breast cancer research funding receive $1.5 billion, but I also want to see all cancers receive this type of priority. I understand that I might be criticized for questioning her one sided commitment to breast cancer. I am not against breast cancer research; I am for an explosion of funding for all cancers.

We need to stand up and be counted. We need to speak up for equitable cancer research funding. Go to and sign our petition to MAKE PROSTATE CANCER A NATIONAL PRIORITY.

(the petition)

Making Prostate Cancer A National Priority

January 21, 2009

To the President of the United States,

Prostate Cancer incidence rates are comparable to Breast Cancer rates. Yet, federal funding is significantly higher for Breast Cancer research than for Prostate Cancer.
In 2008, there were the same number of new cases of Prostate Cancer (186,320) as Breast Cancer (184,450), as estimated by the American Cancer Society.

• In 2007, Breast Cancer received almost two thirds more funding ($127.5 million) from the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program as did Prostate Cancer ($80 million dollars) (59.5% difference).

• In 2007, Breast Cancer received more than twice as much funding ($707 million) as did Prostate Cancer ($305 million) from our nation’s medical research agency, the National Institutes of Health (231% difference).

Breast and Prostate Cancer scientists should not be made to compete for limited research funding. Scientists must feel encouraged to develop prostate cancer research. Both Breast Cancer and Prostate Cancer research funding must continue to grow. Breast Cancer and Prostate Cancer patients, equal in number, should receive equal and adequate funding and promotion for research.

We, the undersigned, call on the President of the United States and the Congress to make Prostate Cancer research a national public health priority. Specifically, we ask the President of the United States to ensure that promotion and funding for Prostate Cancer research is, at all times, comparable to those levels allocated for Breast Cancer.


Joel T Nowak, MA, MSW