Currently, there is “Dear Colleague Letter” being circulated by two members of the U.S. House of Representatives, Jim Marshall (GA) and Peter King (NY) asking for support for increased funding for the Prostate Cancer Research Program (PCRP) — part of the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program at the Department of Defense. The letters are circulated among the House Members to demonstrate support for a budget item, a usual precursor to having a budget item included in the next budget cycle.

This program is the only federally funded research initiative specifically dedicated to prostate cancer. Historically, this program supports cutting edge research which has already had great impact on our current knowledge of prostate cancer and its treatments.
The sad part is that the funding for prostate cancer has been stagnant at $80 million each year since 2001 while other cancers have seen consistent increases in funding levels. Inflation over those 9 years has meant that each year we have seen the number of new research projects slowed almost to a halt.

Unless Congress acts to increase funding for the PCRP, important research already completed will be forced to remain in the lab, never seeing the light of day!

It is vital that you go to: now to write your Representative and ask that he/she sign on in support of the Marshall-King Dear Colleague. The deadline to sign the letter
is March 5, 2010.

Joel T Nowak, MA, MSW