It is unacceptable that most current standard pediatric cancer treatment options were approved before 1990; half before the 1980’s. How is this acceptable for a family whose child is facing cancer?
Cancer is the number one cause of death by disease in kids. Unacceptable.
We need to do better. Every day in the US, 47 children ages 0-19 will learn they have cancer. That is 47 too many. Many of these patients will receive treatments that have not progressed in nearly 40 years. This means that many of today’s patients are receiving pediatric cancer treatment options that are not targeted for their specific cancer. Additionally, these treatments typically make them incredibly sick. In either case, this is unacceptable.
While treatments and outcomes for adult cancer have improved over the past 40 years, treatments and outcomes for kids with cancer have not progressed similarly. Additionally, children’s bodies are still growing and developing, so cancer and its treatment are more likely to affect developing organs.
More than 95% of childhood cancer survivors will develop health-related side effects as a result of either the cancer, or more commonly, their treatment.
Childhood cancer does not discriminate. Kids of all ages, backgrounds, and environments are impacted. And sadly, childhood cancer research receives just 4% of the annual budget from the federal cancer research budget.
Darren Leonard was diagnosed at eight weeks with an inoperable brain tumor in 2009 and continues his fight today. He lives with significant side effects from both the tumor and treatment. Patients like Darren deserve better options.
For these reasons, The Children’s Cancer Foundation, Inc. continues to raise funds to ensure that kids like Darren. CCF is committed to funding research to ensure advances in treatments are available to the youngest and bravest patients. They deserve the best shot at survival.
CCF believes that cures for pediatric cancer are possible. But, in order to ensure better treatments and cures remain options, funding is critical. Our mission is to fund a range of local researchers and programs which provide promise and hope that one day there will be treatments and cures for all pediatric cancers.
I am proud to serve as CCF’s President every day. Until every child is assured a healthy future, we have work to do.
The Children’s Cancer Foundation, Inc.