publication date: Apr. 1, 2016

Schools of Public Health: Moonshot Undervalues Prevention 


Over 70 deans and directors of public health programs and institutes signed a letter March 21 asking the White House for to prioritize federal investments in public health and cancer prevention.

The letter, addressed to Vice President Joe Biden, urges the administration to “pay careful attention to the balance between treatment and prevention-related investments.”

The letter comes from the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health and includes signatories from Yale School of Public Health, the New York Medical College, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health.

Biden is leading the National Cancer Moonshot Program, a $1 billion initiative aimed at doubling the progress of cancer research over the next five years. The program would allot $195 million to NIH in fiscal 2016, according to Obama’s budget proposal (The Cancer Letter, Feb. 12).

The fiscal 2017 budget proposes to allocate $755 million in mandatory funds for new cancer-related research activities—$680 million for NIH and $75 million for FDA. The remaining $50 million is expected to fund Centers of Excellence at the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs.

The public health deans say they “strongly support” the moonshot.

“We are concerned, however, that the initiative may be undervaluing the vital role that public health and prevention have played—and must continue to play—in reducing cancer incidence and mortality,” the March 21 letter states. “Investments in … Continue reading 42-13 Schools of Public Health: Moonshot Undervalues Prevention

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