DeLuca calls for cancer cure

HARRISBURG, March 16 – State Rep. Tony DeLuca, D-Allegheny, held a Capitol news conference this morning in support of his resolution, H.R. 695, which would declare 2016 as "The Year to Cure Cancer in Pennsylvania."

DeLuca was joined by Cancer Caucus chairman, state Rep. Kerry Benninghoff, R-Centre/Mifflin.

The news conference featured Pennsylvania doctors, researchers and medical specialists.

"Some form of cancer touches virtually every family in our country in some way, including my own family," DeLuca said. "We have made incredible strides, but I can't help but wonder what more we can do to eradicate this disease.

"Smallpox has been eradicated with vaccines worldwide. Modern scientists have discovered the causes of tetanus, rabies, yellow fever, measles, whooping cough and others. Yet cancer continues its destruction. It's time we also eradicate cancer."

Health care and cancer specialists who participated in the news conference include:

  • Michael Neal, executive vice president, American Cancer Society;
  • Dr. Chi Van Dang, University of Pennsylvania – Abramson Cancer Center;
  • Dr. Anthony Coletta, Independence Blue Cross;
  • Dr. Maryann Donavan, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute;
  • Dr. Craig Meyers, Penn State University College of Medicine; and
  • Dr. Virginia Calega, Highmark.

The resolution is co-sponsored by more than 50 representatives, Democrats and Republicans, and is scheduled for a vote later today.

A number of cancer support nonprofit agencies also attended the event including the:

  • American Lung Association;
  • Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network;
  • Children's Cancer Recovery Foundation;
  • Leukemia and Lymphoma Society;
  • Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition; and
  • Pennsylvania Prostate Coalition.