Childhood Cancer STAR Act Passes with Bipartisan Support

We are thrilled to hear that the Childhood Cancer Survivorship, Treatment, Access & Research (STAR) Act of 2018 passed in the House of Representatives yesterday after having passed in the Senate on March 22. Our Scientific Director Charles Keller commented on the passage of the Childhood Cancer STAR Act, “We have traction in childhood cancer – through the efforts of many, including those of, all that is left is for those on the frontline to create the cures.”

Given the fact that as of today 1 in 5 kids will not survive cancer, and for many forms of childhood cancer we’ve seen little to no advancement in treatment options for forty or more years (since 1978 only six drugs gained FDA approval for the treatment of childhood cancer), this is very exciting news!

Per the American Association of Cancer Research, provisions of the STAR Act:

  • Authorizes the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to expand existing efforts to collect biospecimens for childhood cancer patients enrolled in NCI-sponsored clinical trials and to collect and maintain relevant clinical, biological, and demographic information on all children, adolescents, and young adults with cancer
  • Authorizes grants to state cancer registries to identify and track incidences of childhood, adolescent, and young adult cancers
  • Authorizes grants for pediatric cancer survivorship research and guides the Secretary of Health and Human Services to facilitate the identification of best practices for childhood and adolescent cancer survivorship care
  • Requires that the National Cancer Advisory Board include at least one pediatric oncologist to ensure pediatric cancer research concerns are represented in recommendations to the NCI.
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