action alert

Post date: 3/31/2009

Today, Senators Kennedy and Hutchison introduced a landmark cancer bill in the Senate.

The 21st Century Cancer ALERT Act will improve cancer research, early detection, and cancer care for underserved populations

Urge your Senators to support this bill TODAY!

Today, a crucial cancer bill was introduced in the U.S. Senate.

The 21st Century Cancer ALERT (Access to Life-saving Early Detection, Research and Treatment) Act – sponsored by Senators Edward Kennedy and Kay Bailey Hutchison – promises to reignite America's war on cancer by strengthening cancer research, emphasizing early detection, and improving cancer care for underserved populations.

Senators Kennedy and Hutchison have made passing the ALERT Act a priority for 2009. We can help rally support in Washington by urging our legislators to cosponsor the legislation and ensure it moves quickly through the Senate and the House, all the way to President Obama's desk.

Click here to urge your Senators to support the ALERT Act from day one!

We all know the harsh realities of cancer:

  • 40 percent of Americans will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives.
  • 1.4 million new cases of cancer will be diagnosed this year alone.
  • Cancer claimed more than 565,000 American lives in 2008 – 1,500 people a day.

But in spite of these staggering figures, funding for research, early detection services, and treatment programs is disappearing. That's why it's so important we seize this opportunity to turn our attention back to fighting this terrible disease.

Ask your Senators to support the Cancer ALERT Act and to make passing the bill a priority now.

ALERT stands for Access to Life-saving Early Detection, Research and Treatment:

  • Early Detection – The ALERT Act will place an emphasis on early detection and promote the discovery and development of biomarkers to detect cancers at the earliest possible stage when cancer is most treatable. The bill also has a particular focus on childhood, rare, and high-mortality cancers.
  • Research – The ALERT Act will strengthen the cancer research process by promoting public-private partnerships and collaboration between government agencies. The bill also has a focus on translational research so new discoveries and breakthroughs in the laboratory make their way to patients' bedsides as quickly as possible.
  • Treatment – The ALERT Act will improve access to cancer care for underserved populations by expanding access to clinical trials, patient navigation services, and screening and treatment for colorectal cancer.

Let's take advantage of the momentum that has brought the 21st Century Cancer ALERT Act this far. Click here to email your Senators TODAY!

Together, we can help make this landmark cancer legislation the law of the land and help reignite the war on cancer!


Ambassador Nancy Brinker
Founder, Susan G. Komen for the Cure®
Board Member, Susan G. Komen for the Cure® Advocacy Alliance

Post date: 3/25/2009

ONStat members – we need your help!  With one quick phone call to your Representative, you could make the difference whether or not the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is granted the authority to regulate tobacco.


H.R. 1256 – the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act – one of ONS’s top priorities for the year – has been scheduled for a vote in the House of Representatives for this Monday, March 30th.


We have heard from our Capitol Hill sources that Members of Congress need to hear from oncology nurses about why this bill is necessary.  We at ONS know first-hand the devastation that cancer causes; one in three deaths from cancer is linked to tobacco.  We need to tell our elected officials that they can change that statistic – if they vote “yes on H.R. 1256 on Monday.”


This important bill passed the House last year, but was never brought up in the Senate, so it died prior to the end of the 110th Congress.  Now, with additional supporters in the House and the Senate, and a commitment from President Obama to sign the bill into law, we are in a stronger position – but still need to shore up support before the vote!


Please take a moment to visit the ONS Legislative Action Center to view the full action alert and get the talking points for your call to your Representative.  We only have the next three days to make the difference!




Thank you for taking quick action – your phone call will make a difference!

action alert
Dear SCCA Member,
Show Your Support for Breast Cancer Prevention!Tell our state leaders to honor their commitment to South Carolina women.Click here to write your legislators now!
In 2009, more than 2,500 South Carolina women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Sadly, 620 of these women will not live to see 2010.Last year, our state legislators took a stand for South Carolina women, approving $2 million dollars in funding for the Best Chance Network (BCN), which provides early detection screening to disadvantaged women in our state.But, due to budget shortfalls, South Carolina has cut $400,000 of BCN funding – putting at risk thousands of women the state just recently worked so hard to save. What's worse, the Breast and Cervical Cancer Treatment Program is being slashed, too – eliminating Medicaid covered treatment for uninsured women under 40 for breast and cervical cancer.Don't let that happen! Click here and urge your state legislators to honor their commitment and protect funding for the Best Chance Network and the Medicaid Treatment Program for breast and cervical cancer.Effective January 1, 2009, women age 40 and older must be screened through the BCN program to be eligible for Medicaid-covered treatment. At current funding levels, the BCN program screens less than 20 percent of eligible women. With these cuts, even fewer women will have access to these life-saving services.As a dedicated Komen Activist, you know the importance of early detection. When breast and cervical cancer are detected early, patients have more treatment options and a greater rate of survival.That's why it's critical our elected officials hear from us right now! Delays in diagnosis and treatment can, and will, affect chances of survival for these women – we can't allow that to happen!Please take moment and urge your legislators to protect early detection services for all women in South Carolina. Don't delay - we need your help!Together we can ensure that South Carolina's poor and disadvantaged women are given a fighting chance.For more information on our efforts please view the media links here.Thank you for your support! Sincerely,Mary Lynn Faunda Donovan
Executive Director
Upstate Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure®

Taffy Tamblyn
Executive Director
Lowcountry Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure®

South Carolina Cancer Alliance (SCCA)
2009 Cancer Policy & Legislative Agenda

The SCCA recommends:

1. Increase cigarette tax increase to at least $1.00 per pack.

Rationale: Increasing the cigarette tax is the most effective way to reduce smoking among children and adults and prevent future death and disease

2. Secure at least $3.7 million recurring funding for the state colorectal cancer screening program for low income uninsured persons.

Rationale: Most colorectal cancers deaths can be prevented with routine screening. Need recurring state funds in the DHEC budget to continue vital screening services for low income, uninsured persons.

3. Secure at least $2 million recurring state funding for the expansion of breast and cervical cancer screening by the Best Chance Network (BCN).

Rationale: Breast and cervical cancer screening saves lives. Currently $2 million non recurring state dollars support BCN for screening. These funds allow BCN to double the number of low income women screened and expand screenings to the 40-46 age category.

4. Secure at least $5 million recurring state funding for youth tobacco prevention and cessation program.

Rationale: 90% of smokers started at an early age. Comprehensive state-wide, youth smoking prevention programs, as recommended by the CDC, can prevent children from becoming smokers through education, community programs, media campaigns and enforcement. Vital cessation services can help youth and adult smokers quit.

Adopted by the SCCA Coordinating Council and Executive Committee in October 2008 


PDF Version



Registration Now Open for ONS Research Conference
Register now for the ONS 10th National Conference on Cancer Nursing Research, February 12-14 in Orlando, FL. Have some late-breaking research to share? Now’s your chance. ONS is accepting abstracts for the conferences Late-Breaking Research session. http://ons.org/meetings/research09/


Meet the Candidates for 2009 ONS National Election
Be prepared to vote in January. Meet the candidates now for President-Elect, Treasurer, Director-at-Large, and Nominating Committee. Voting opens January 2. You are an integral part to ensuring the voice and future of ONS and oncology nursing! http://www.ons.org/membership/election/



New Resources Available from ONS!
Look for two new books from ONS! The Advanced Oncology Nursing Certification Review and Resource Manual can be used as both a study guide for advanced oncology nursing certification and a clinical resource. Order now and save on a special introductory discount offer! The new edition of the ONS Career Resource Guide: Marketing Yourself for Success will help you navigate your career path in these challenging times. Save when you order your copy today! http://esource.ons.org/Publications/


New! Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialist Competencies
This document outlines specialty entry-level competencies for Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNSs) who care for adult and late adolescent patients throughout the continuum of cancer care.
Download to learn more. http://www.ons.org/clinical/professional/QualityCancer/documents/cnscomps.pdf



From the Editor

From prevention and identification of risk status to the development and use of targeted therapies, genomics is changing the face of oncology care. Check out the ONS Web Site Genetics Clinical and Patient Resource Areas for information about cancer genetics and its implications.





 Tuesday, Dec 2, 2008


State must get serious about fighting smoking

DEAD LAST. AGAIN. By nearly any measure, South Carolina drags the bottom when it comes to combating the scourge of smoking. Our laws to protect non-smokers are inadequate (though improving), our tax is embarrassingly low (no improvement there — in decades), our smoking rates are high, and now the annual report from a national coalition of public health groups finds that, once again, we’re doing the worst job in the nation of providing programs designed to keep people from starting to smoke or to help them stop once they start. And what little we do is funded with federal money; we’re the only state in the nation that isn’t spending a penny of state tax money on prevention.

The main reason legislators don’t put any effort — or dollars — into keeping kids from smoking is the same reason they maintain our lowest-in-the-nation cigarette tax: They just don’t consider it that important.

Never mind that more kids start smoking every day, ignorantly volunteering for a life sentence of addiction, illness and early death. Never mind that the taxpayers invariably end up paying some or all of the bill for the addicts’ medical care. Never mind that there are proven, effective prevention programs that cost exponentially less than those medical bills.

Ah, but it will be years before we reap the financial rewards of prevention, because the carcinogens packed inside the nicotine-enhanced delivery system don’t poison their victims immediately. By then the politicians who are making state policy today will be long gone. Someone else’s problem.

Short-sighted. Self-serving. Irresponsible. Deadly.

Smoking doesn’t hurt just the smokers. It hurts the infants and children who have to live with smokers, the low-skilled workers who can’t afford to quit the job where they must breathe other people’s smoke all day, the employers who have to deal with absenteeism and lose workers whose training they have invested in.

Tough luck, our Legislature says. There are more important things to spend tax dollars on: parades and festivals, local “tourism” efforts that won’t attract a single tourist, but might mollify folks back home.

You don’t even have to spend a dime to reduce smoking. One of the most effective anti-smoking tools is a high cigarette tax. It works particularly well on kids, who are easier than grown-ups to price out of the market; once they get old enough to afford an addiction, most of them have enough sense not to smoke.

“No new taxes ... ever ... so help me God ... take my first child if I break my pledge” comes the chorus from inside the State House. Never mind that the public overwhelmingly supports raising our pitiful cigarette tax; even smokers support it. Never mind that raising this tax is guaranteed to save lives. No new taxes.

It’s easy to get your priorities wrong when those nice people in the cigarette industry are always so generous in helping raise money for your re-election campaign.

Most legislators don’t buy the ridiculous never-any-taxes rhetoric, and don’t sell out to the industry. They want to deal with the problem. Want to keep kids from smoking. Want to protect non-smokers from smokers. Want to invest wisely in that ounce of prevention. But it’s the same old story: They don’t want to badly enough to overcome the loud and determined opposition of a few legislators (or a governor) who are fixated on an all-taxes-are-evil-no-matter-what philosophy, or who care more about the health of the tobacco industry than our kids. They’re well-intentioned, those legislators in the majority. But their inaction makes them culpable.

© 2008 TheState.com and wire service sources. All Rights Reserved. http://www.thestate