Washington:The bipartisan Congressional Ovarian Cancer Caucus was launched Tuesday in Washington to bring more awareness of and research into a disease that kills more than 14,000 women each year.
Representatives Sean Duffy of Wisconsin and Rosa DeLaura of Connecticut came together after both were personally touched by ovarian cancer. DeLaura and Duffy’s sister are survivors of the disease, and Duffy lost a very good friend to the cancer.
Calaneet Balas, Ovarian Cancer National Alliance chief executive, said the caucus would will remind Congress of the need for funding.
“The alliance has been working for nearly 18 years now, and with a lot of champions on [Capitol Hill],” Balas said. “We’ve been able to raise about $2.2 billion for research and awareness, but this caucus is going to be really focused on continuing that awareness all year round on the Hill through members, as well as focusing on increasing some of those appropriations for research and education.”
The alliance says that the survival rate for ovarian cancer has improved, but that there is no test for early detection; symptoms are often confused with those of other diseases, leaving 85 percent of women diagnosed when the disease is in its later stages. More than 50 percent of these women will not live more than five years after being diagnosed.