“I’ll sign it as soon as it reaches my desk, because, like a lot of you, I’ve lost people I love to cancer.”
President Obama in his weekly address noted that from the very first outset, his administration promised to restore science to its rightful place and unleash American innovation and technology to tackle the health challenges of our time.
He said, “Over the last eight years, we’ve delivered on that promise in many ways, both big and small — including, of course, providing health coverage to 20 million more Americans, and making health care more affordable for all Americans.”
The President further argued that his administration has recently up the ante by placing a bill before Congress, “that could help unlock cures for Alzheimer’s, end cancer as we know it, and help people seeking treatment for opioid addiction finally get the help they need.”
“It’s called the 21st Century Cures Act. It’s an opportunity to save lives, and an opportunity we just can’t miss,” he added.
He listed accordingly, five things that the new bill would accomplish:
One, combat the heroin and prescription drug epidemic that’s plaguing so many communities.
Two, make America the country that ends cancer once and for all by investing in promising new therapies, in new ways to detect and prevent cancer and to develop more vaccines for cancer similar to what currently obtains with measles or mumps.
Three, give researchers the resources they need to help identify ways to treat, cure, and prevent all kinds of brain disorders.
Four, engage in bipartisan mental health reforms, including important programs for suicide prevention.
Five ensures that the FDA incorporates patients’ opinions and feedback in decisions in the development of drugs.
“So that’s what the 21st Century Cures Act is all about. Like all good legislation, it reflects compromise. This week, the House passed it overwhelmingly, and in a bipartisan fashion. The Senate will vote in the next few days, and I hope they’ll do the same. I’ll sign it as soon as it reaches my desk, because, like a lot of you, I’ve lost people I love to cancer. I hear every day from Americans whose loved ones are suffering from addiction and other debilitating diseases. And I believe we should seize every chance we have to find cures as soon as possible. When it’s your family, hope can’t come soon enough,” the President concluded.
Carol Maye, Readers Bureau, Fellow
Edited by Jesus Chan
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