One year ago, President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden reignited the Cancer Moonshot, setting an ambitious, achievable goal: to reduce the death rate from cancer by at least 50 percent over the next 25 years, and improve the experience of people and families living with and surviving cancer, ultimately ending cancer as we know it today.
The Cancer Moonshot has spurred tremendous action across the federal government and from the public and private sectors, building a strong foundation for the work ahead. Today, the Administration is announcing new actions from inside and outside of government that will drive additional progress, drawing us closer to ending cancer as we know it today.
Last year, the President stood up the first-ever Cancer Cabinet to mobilize the federal government, and called on individuals, health care providers, and leaders across sectors to step up and take action in five key priority areas: (1) close the screening gap, (2) understand and address environmental exposure, (3) decrease the impact of preventable cancers, (4) bring cutting-edge research through the pipeline to patients and communities, and (5) support patients and caregivers.
To date, the Cancer Moonshot has announced over 25 new programs, policies, and resources to address these five priority areas. The First Lady has traveled the country and the world to hear from cancer patients and their loved ones, as well as the researchers, physicians, nurses, and patient navigators who support them – focusing on the importance of early detection and improving the experience of patients, families, and caregivers. And, the White House and Cancer Cabinet have held more than 50 community conversations and events. More than 60 private companies, non-profits, academic institutions, and patient groups have also stepped up with new actions and collaborations.
Today’s new actions will build on the work done in the first year of the reignited Cancer Moonshot. In addition, today, the President is also announcing his intent to appoint six members to the National Cancer Advisory Board, which plays an important role in guiding the Director of the NCI in setting the course for the national cancer research program.
The Cancer Cabinet is taking the following new actions:
- National Cancer Institute (NCI) is launching a first-of-its-kind, public-private partnership to bring clinical and patient navigation support to families facing childhood cancer. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) is launching the Childhood Cancer – Data Integration for Research, Education, Care, and Clinical Trials (CC-DIRECT) to support children and Adolescents and Young Adults (AYAs) with cancer throughout their cancer journey; provide patient navigation support to families seeking information and optimal care; facilitate research participation; and establish a portable, shareable, standardized cancer health record. This means families facing childhood cancer can reach out for support and get connected to excellent care and the opportunity to participate in research through clinical trials and data sharing initiatives. This new entity represents a groundbreaking collaboration between NCI, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology (ACTO), American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), American Cancer Society (ACS), the MITRE Corporation, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Children’s Oncology Group (COG), and the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR).
- Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), is awarding $10 million to improve access to lifesaving cancer screenings and early detection including patient navigation support services. HRSA, a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is doubling its investment in new partnerships to bring community health centers together with NCI-Designated Cancer Centers to facilitate access to lifesaving cancer screenings and early detection services for underserved communities. Health centers that receive funding will conduct patient outreach in these communities to promote early detection of cancer, connect patients to screening services, and provide direct navigation assistance with accessing high quality cancer care and treatment, as needed. Today’s awards total more than $10 million for 22 HRSA-funded health centers, expanding on the $5 million awarded to 11 health centers in 2022
- HHS is launching “CancerX,” a Public-Private Partnership developed as a national accelerator to boost innovation in the fight against cancer. HHS, ONC and Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH), is launching the “CancerX” National Innovation Accelerator Initiative, a government wide effort to develop tools, such as digital solutions to improve cancer patient care coordination and communication, new software technology to help community organizations meet cancer patients where they are, or new platforms to support patients with their post-treatment care. This new public-private partnership will drive support for and accelerate the development of biotech and health tech startups solutions focused on the continuum of cancer care, including prevention, detection, treatment, and transitions in care. Organizations whose missions are aligned with the Cancer Moonshot goals will work together to surface innovative solutions and coordinate access to research, mentorship, resources, and other collaborative opportunities. This work will help startups scale their business and work toward creating ‘challenge-focused’ solutions for cancer with health equity in mind. This initiative will build on previous models deployed by successful HHS InnovationX program accelerators such as KidneyX and PandemicX.
The public and private sector is stepping up with the following new actions:
Promoting Cancer Prevention
- National Minority Quality Forum (NMQF) is launching local community-based activities to increase cancer screenings in at-risk communities. NMQF, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that integrates data and expertise in support of initiatives to eliminate health disparities, is releasing a new online hub, which includes several interactive features designed to increase awareness about cancer disparities, innovation in early detection and treatment, and patient- and clinician-oriented resources to close gaps in cancer care delivery. In addition, to help spur action on the ground, the Cancer Stage Shifting Initiative, which was created to move from late stage to early- stage diagnosis and treatment of cancer, improving cancer care and reducing cancer deaths for all, will work together with private and public partners and local advocates to increase awareness of cancer risk and treatment, improve clinical trial diversity, and support efforts to understand the impact of the water crisis on cancer risk in Flint, Michigan.
- Supergoop! is committing to donate SPF sunscreen to schools and communities across the country to encourage children to start protecting their skin at a young age. Since sun exposure is cumulative throughout a person’s lifetime, Supergoop! is committing to providing the country’s youth the education and resources to keep them protected. Supergoop! is growing the “Ounce by Ounce Program”, designed to give SPF sunscreen to schools for free. So far, Supergoop! has donated more than 6,800 SPF sunscreen pumps to over 1,900 classrooms and youth organizations and is dedicated to expanding this cancer prevention program.
Supporting Patients and Caregivers through their Cancer Fight
- American Cancer Society and the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation launch $10 Million challenge grant to benefit five American Cancer Society Hope Lodges. The American Cancer Society and the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation (RMSFF) announced the launch of a $10 million challenge grant to benefit five American Cancer Society Hope Lodges – in Omaha, NE; Charleston, SC; Lexington, KY; Lubbock, TX; and Kansas City, MO. Funds raised through the RMSFF challenge grant will be used to establish $2 million endowments at each of the five Hope Lodges to support ongoing maintenance of their physical facilities and operations and support physical improvements to those building.
- Colorectal Cancer Alliance is launching BlueHQ, the first-of-its-kind comprehensive support hub for patients, survivors, and caregivers to navigate colorectal cancer. BlueHQ is a free support service designed to help patients learn, connect, and take action to improve outcomes. The support hub includes features to suggest helpful information and resources that align with the patient’s profile; connects patients to allies with similar experiences, as well as a patient and family support navigator; and safely and securely stores appointments and notes or journal entries, which can be shared with caregivers and healthcare providers.
- New coalition launches to address the obstacles rural patient communities face accessing care. A broad national advocacy campaign is set to be launched, bringing together a diverse coalition of public-private partners to raise awareness and spur action to address the persistent, underlying issues that have caused rural America to fall behind in healthcare, technology, and infrastructure. The coalition includes Stupid Cancer, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, Prevent Cancer Foundation, Cervivor, National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, Cancer and Careers, Triage Cancer, Tigerlily Foundation and Fight Colorectal Cancer Patient Advocate Foundation. Underpinning these efforts will be a storytelling campaign led by OffScrip Health, a leading digital health media platform focused on patient engagement, health equity, and access to care, and FINN Partners, a global integrated marketing and communications agency that will tackle critical issues impacting rural communities’ health, such as access to care, broadband infrastructure, consumer goods, clean water, telehealth, and more. The series will also spotlight the new technologies, partnerships, and practices that can make a difference in addressing this crisis of care.
Bringing Cancer Screening to More Communities
- Prevent Cancer Foundation to launch “Early Detection = Better Outcomes” campaign to improve knowledge and completion of recommended cancer screenings. The Prevent Cancer Foundation is launching a new signature campaign, “Early Detection = Better Outcomes,” to educate Americans on what recommended cancer screenings and cancer-related vaccinations they need and to encourage them to schedule appointments. Better Outcomes shares evidence-based resources, including screening options by age and information on vaccinations to prevent cancer, tools to find free and low-cost cancer screenings, and information on how family history can impact cancer risk. The campaign will address two additional barriers that Americans face — fear of screening examinations and lack of access — and introduce a new, interactive tool to deliver a personalized screening plan that can be shared with a health provider.
- Siemens Healthineers is committing to address cancer screening disparities in underserved regions. Siemens Healthineers is working to increase breast screening capabilities and capacity by providing a mobile mammography screening truck, as well as dedicated technologists to perform scans and artificial intelligence- (AI-) technology to help read 3D examinations in Pennsylvania and North Carolina. To date 680 free mammography screenings have been administered, in partnership with Penn Medicine and the Office of Children and Families Philadelphia in Southwest Philadelphia and WakeMed Health & Hospitals at Raleigh Medical Park. Expanding on the success of this program, Siemens Healthineers will be purchasing an additional mobile screening truck with the goal to partner on 10-12 additional mobile screening events this year, reaching at least 2,000 women in underserved areas, including urban and rural sites around the country.
Driving Research Advances through Data Sharing and Clinical Trial Expansion
- CancerLinQ® and Owkin pursue a new research collaboration to improve the care of patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer. CancerLinQ®, a health technology platform from the American Society of Clinical Oncology, and Owkin, a French-American AI biotech company, launch an initiative to improve outcomes for people facing metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). They will use data from CancerLinQ Discovery®, a real-world oncology database of de-identified electronic health record (EHR) data from more than 6 million patients with cancer and blood diseases in the United States to identify possible predictive factors of why some patients with NSCLC), the most common form of lung cancer, respond poorly to immunotherapy treatment. The goal is to use the data routinely collected at the point of care to learn how to better tailor treatments for patients with advanced NSCLC.
- Hyundai Hope On Wheels awards nearly $15 million to accelerate pediatric cancer research and treatments. Hyundai Hope On Wheels, a non-profit organization supported by Hyundai and its U.S. dealers, donated $15 million in research grants to over sixty hospitals and research institutions across the country in 2022. With this contribution, Hyundai Hope On Wheels will surpass $200 million in lifetime funding for research and innovative treatments in pursuit of a cure for pediatric cancer. As Hyundai Hope On Wheels celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, they are more committed than ever to inspire hope around the nation.
- Susan G. Komen commits resources to improve outcomes and expands services for the breast cancer community. Susan G. Komen awarded $21.7 million to fund 48 new research projects at 26 distinguished academic medical institutions in the United States that are focused on improving patient outcomes – particularly for people with the most aggressive breast cancers, or who have experienced a recurrence or metastasis. With this investment, Komen is now supporting more than 152 active research projects, representing more than $115 million in funding. Additionally, Komen has expanded access and affordability for breast cancer screening and diagnosis by growing its screening and diagnostics program to 12 cities and providing no-cost breast cancer screening mammograms and diagnostic tests to individuals who meet income qualifications.
Today’s announcements build on actions taken in the first year of the reignited Cancer Moonshot:
- The Administration launched WhiteHouse.gov/CancerMoonshot, where patients can share their stories of inspiration and hope, people can provide their ideas on how to make progress, and organization, companies, and institutions can commit new actions to help achieve Cancer Moonshot goals.
- President Biden launched ARPA-H, a new agency to deliver new ways to prevent, detect, and treat cancer and other diseases, appointed its first-ever Director, and secured $2.5 billion in initial investment, including $1.5 billion in the Fiscal Year 2023 omnibus package.
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued more than $200 million in grants as part of greater than $1 billion commitment to advance cancer prevention and control through cancer screening programs reaching every state, U.S. territories, and tribal organizations;
- The Environmental Protection Act (EPA) dedicated $1 billion in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding to accelerate clean up at up to 80 previously underfunded Superfund sites.
- EPA committed $7.4 billion to help states replace lead pipes and service lines, which will protect millions of families from so-called “forever chemicals” and other contaminants that may increase people’s risk of getting certain cancers.
- The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is implementing the President’s bipartisan PACT Act, with 1.5 million veterans already receiving screening for toxic exposure as of January 2023, and in November, VA announced it would expedite veterans’ benefits claims for cancers associated with the PACT Act, helping these veterans gain more timely access to health care and other financial benefits.
- The Food and Drug Administration proposed rules prohibiting menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars that, if finalized, could avert up to 654,000 smoking-related deaths, including approximately 238,000 among African Americans. Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable cancer and death from cancer—30 percent of all cancer deaths in the United States are caused by smoking;
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced its new Agricultural Science Center of Excellence for Nutrition and Diet for Better Health (ASCEND for Better Health) to accelerate research on diet-related chronic diseases, including cancer, and aims to translate research into impactful solutions that improve public health and well-being goals as support of the Cancer Moonshot and the National Strategy on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health.
- Tens of thousands of cancer patients could see their prescription drug costs go down by thousands annually because the President signed the Inflation Reduction Act, which caps out-of-pocket prescription drug costs at $2000 per year for Medicare beneficiaries.
- NCI launched a large national trial that, if successful, will identify effective blood tests for the detection of one or more cancers, providing the opportunity for additional, less-invasive tools for early detection.