Federal pediatric cancer funding would be improved under new Fitzpatrick bill

U.S. Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) sponsored on March 26 a bipartisan bill to ensure that a fair percentage of federal cancer research funds are dedicated to pediatric cancer research.

“This legislation takes steps to ensure pediatric cancer researchers have the funding necessary to save the many lives of children fighting cancer,” Rep. Fitzpatrick said. 

The congressman and seven original cosponsors, including U.S. Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), introduced the Fairness to Kids with Cancer Act, H.R. 2210, which would ensure federal funds for pediatric cancer research match the same percentage of the number of American citizens under the age of 18 years as part of the general population, according to a bill summary provided by Rep. Fitzpatrick’s office.

“There are few things more heart-wrenching than seeing a child battle cancer,” said Rep. Fitzpatrick. “No child should ever have to suffer through the pain of cancer, nor should any parent have to watch their child struggle and fight to survive. I am proud to introduce this life-saving legislation… as we present a united and bipartisan front to combat and defeat pediatric cancer.”

Approximately one in 285 children every year will be diagnosed with cancer before they turn 20, according to the American Childhood Cancer Organization, which reports that cancer remains the leading cause of death among children in the United States.

“There is no cause greater than the fight for our children’s right to grow up to be adults,” said Mina Carroll, co-founder of the Storm the Heavens Fund. “This is not about red or blue, this is about right or wrong. There is no reason this bill should not have unanimous support from everybody in Congress.”