• For Immediate Release
    January 18, 2012 - AUSTIN, TX
  • For more information, contact
    Ellen Read 512-305-8483

State Cancer Institute Combats Rising Economic and Human Impact of Cancer


Texas residents unable to afford cancer prevention services will have increased access to critical breast, cervical and colorectal cancer screening as a result of grants awarded by the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT). Counseling for tobacco cessation services as well as a survivorship program were also funded by the Institute at their quarterly board meeting held today in Austin, TX.

"We know that treatment is more likely to be successful when cancer is found at an early stage," said Dr. Becky Garcia, "In addition, the monthly costs of treatment for late stage cancers are often twice that of cancers found at an early stage. CPRIT's efforts in screening and early detection are making a difference in terms of both the human and economic costs of cancer."

And these projects cannot begin soon enough. CPRIT recently received the latest commissioned "An Economic Assessment of the Cost of Cancer in Texas and the Benefits of the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas and its Programs" yearly report which reflects the cost of cancer in Texas in 2011 to be $28.1 billion, an increase of $2.8 billion since last year's report, and an overall increase of 28.6 percent since the report was first published in 2007.

"This latest report confirms what we all know - that cancer is a costly disease - not only in dollar amounts but more importantly in lives lost. We must keep up the fight Texans are waging against cancer" stated Mr. Jimmy Mansour, Chairman of the CPRIT Oversight Committee.

The CPRIT Oversight Committee approved the recruitment of two new researchers to the state of Texas, bringing the total to 38 new recruits as a result of CPRIT efforts in Texas. Dr. Kenneth Westover from Harvard University and Dr. Sandi Pruitt from Washington University have been invited to join the staff at The University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas.

Texas voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment in 2007 establishing CPRIT and authorizing the state to issue $3 billion in bonds to fund groundbreaking cancer research and prevention programs and services in Texas. CPRIT's goal is to expedite innovation and commercialization in the area of cancer research and to enhance access to evidence-based prevention programs and services throughout the state. CPRIT accepts applications and awards grants for a wide variety of cancer-related research and for the delivery of cancer prevention programs and services by public and private entities located in Texas. More information about CPRIT is available on its website, www.cprit.state.tx.us.

###