Arkansan promotes cancer-study work
Mary Katherine Wilson, a member of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network-Northwest Arkansas, traveled to Washington, D.C., last month to participate in the organization’s 10th annual Pancreatic Cancer Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill.
The Fayetteville woman was one of 700 people who urged members of Congress to increase funding for the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health.
“Research is critical in the fight against the third leading cause of cancer deaths,” she said in an email. “I started this fight after I lost both my mom and my dad to this horrible disease.”
An estimated 53,670 people will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2017, the American Cancer Society estimates. This year, an estimated 43,090 will die of the disease.
There’s no reliable screening mechanism. By the time it is diagnosed, it is typically in an advanced stage. The fiveyear survival rate is 9 percent.
Wilson urged people to call their elected representatives and ask them to support funding for cancer research.
“It is not a partisan issue, it is a people issue which could mean life or death,” she wrote.