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National Cancer Institute: Battling Cancer and a Recession
Date:1/16/2009

DURHAM, N.C., Jan. 16 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Despite difficult financial times and flat federal funding of biomedical research, five important actions -- which can be implemented rapidly and at modest cost -- can yield dramatic results for patients and the public. So write three leaders of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in a commentary published today by "The Oncologist."

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080627/CLF051LOGO )

In the article, James H. Doroshow, M.D., director of NCI's Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis; Robert T. Croyle, Ph.D., director of its Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences; and John E. Niederhuber, M.D., director of the National Cancer Institute recommend:

-- Significantly increasing enrollment of Medicare patients into cancer clinical trials, by modestly increasing the Medicare reimbursement rate for the type of office visits required for patients entered into clinical trials.

-- Increasing collaborations between NCI and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to determine the effectiveness of new cancer drugs.

-- Undertaking a national outcomes research demonstration project, to help close the gap between the rapid pace of innovation in biomedicine and our ability to harness it to improve population health.

-- Leveraging existing tobacco-control collaborations and possible new authorities at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, tackle tobacco control with the seriousness and energy it deserves.

-- Disseminating information about and implementing greater levels of colorectal cancer screening.

This short list of actions, the authors propose, "has the potential for substantial clinical and public health impact at minimal cost. All of these can be implemented qu
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SOURCE AlphaMed Press
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