Over the last few days, everyone was caught up in the quagmire of news stories surrounding the events leading up to the Inauguration on January 20, 2017. An announcement gained media attention. Plans were underway for a renewed effort to find a cancer cure.
In President Obama’s final State of the Union Address, he announced the start of a new national effort to find a cure for cancer. Vice-president Joe Biden will be leading the efforts. The Vice-president’s son, Beau, recently died of brain cancer after a hard-fought battle against the disease.
Biden called for a “Cancer Moonshot” much like the national efforts called for by President Kennedy to develop the space program and put a man on the moon. With increased funding and the government removing some of the obstacles which have slowed cancer research in the past, they hope to speed the progress of cancer research.
Having worked as a registered nurse for over 30 years, I’ve taken care of many patients at various stages during their fight against cancer. The changes in treatments and the improved survival rates for various forms of cancer has undergone significant improvements over the years.
“Cancer” is a scary word. It is a generic name for a multitude of diseases of every body system and organ found in the human anatomy. With about one hundred different types of “cancer” identified, and each one with a differing progression, treatment, and outcome; it is amazing how far medical research has come. Breast cancer, various skin cancers, thyroid and testicular cancers have high cure rates today as compared to even ten years past.
But so many forms of the disease are difficult to detect in the early stages which affects successful treatment. Others are very close to breakthroughs. These advances give us hope a cure for cancer may be only one discovery away.
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States. In 2017, a renewed effort like the one proposed by President Obama and VP Joe Biden is uplifting and should be an effort all Americans should rally behind.
President Kennedy’s address at Rice University on September 12, 1962, epitomizes this new “Moonshot” better than anything I could write. A portion of his speech is below:
“We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win…”
Only a few short years after Kennedy’s rousing speech, the United States put the first man on the moon. May President Obama and Vice-President Biden have the same kind of success finding a cure for cancer.
OMP Admin Note: Kate McGinn is a writer and OMP Network member – one of a group of networkers who will be blogging on a regular basis on various causes and issues. Kate hopes to spread awareness of the issue of American Veterans returning home to less help than they deserve. EMMAUS is one of the two main charities we are supporting.
Kate McGinn’s fiction can be found on Amazon in the flash fiction series BITE SIZE STORIES (Volume Two) along with five other guest writers. Her full length book EXODUS is also available on Amazon.