Saturday, August 31, 2013

Presidential Proclamation, 2013

Presidential Proclamation: National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, 2013

Every September, America renews our commitment to curing childhood cancer and offers our support to the brave young people who are fighting this disease. Thousands are diagnosed with pediatric cancer each year, and it remains the leading cause of death by disease for American children under 15. For those children and their families, and in memory of every young person lost to cancer, we unite behind improved treatment, advanced research, and brighter futures for young people everywhere.

Over the past few decades, we have made great strides in the fight against pediatric cancer. Thanks to significant advances in treatment over the last 30 years, the combined 5-year survival rate for children with cancer increased by more than 20 percentage points. Today, a substantial proportion of children diagnosed with cancer can anticipate a time when their illness will be in long-term remission or cured altogether.

My Administration is dedicated to carrying this progress forward. We are funding extensive research into the causes of childhood cancer and its safest and most effective treatments. We also remain committed to easing financial burdens on families supporting a loved one with cancer. Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies can no longer deny coverage to children with pre-existing conditions or set lifetime caps on essential health benefits. As of January 2014, insurers will be prohibited from dropping coverage for patients who choose to participate in a clinical trial, including clinical trials that treat childhood cancer.

All children deserve the chance to dream, discover, and realize their full potential. This month, we extend our support to young people fighting for that opportunity, and we recognize all who commit themselves to advancing the journey toward a cancer-free world.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2013 as National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. I encourage all Americans to join me in reaffirming our commitment to fighting childhood cancer.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirtieth day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand thirteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-eighth.


Friday, August 30, 2013

Kicking off Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Hello everybody!
      Another semester has started here at the University of Utah, with all the fun and work college brings.  I'm delving into richer bioengineering coursework, including a physiology course with a focus on neural engineering.  I'm continuing with my involvement in SWE, working to bring STEM education to girls and women.
       I also got a grant to work on a research project in the lab I worked in during the spring.  I will be studying a latent form of antithrombin that is proposed to have anti-angiogenic properties.  These properties could be exploited to treat many diseases, including tumors, which would definitely be a good thing!  I'll write a post specifically about my research a little later this month, which brings me to by next point:
      As you all know (or at least I hope you do), September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month.  As I did last year, I will be 'celebrating' by raising awareness in every way that I can.  I will be posting daily about different facets of childhood cancer, raising awareness and educating on the realities of childhood cancer.  Lizi will be writing a column about childhood cancer for the Utah Daily Chronicle, which I will post the link to as soon as it's published!  I hope you'll help me turn the world gold as we become aware of childhood cancer.


Monday, August 19, 2013


   Today Elora celebrates her 15th birthday. But she celebrates without her twin, Ariel, who passed away in December.  Ariel was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma in October 2007, just as my brother was finishing up treatment.  She relapsed multiple times, fighting metastasizes in her spine and brain, and battled fiercely.  Cancer took her before her time, leaving her twin without her.
    Ariel is just one of the many warriors who inspires me to fight against cancer.  Today, think of all the birthdays that were never celebrated because of childhood cancer.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013