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Office of the Vice President

For Immediate Release April 20, 1999


The report released today by the American Cancer Society, the National Cancer Institute, and the Centers for Disease Control is good news for the millions of American families that are impacted by cancer. This report shows that we are making new progress in the fight against cancer as the rates of new cases and deaths for all cancers is down again.

Cancer patients are benefiting from new improved treatments; new tools for screening and diagnosis are returning to many patients the promise of a long and healthy life; and scientists are on the cusp of translating stunning advances in genetics into an explosive growth of new possibilities to fight cancer. We are turning the corner in the war against cancer.

However, this is not a time to rest. Today's report shows that we won't make progress against lung cancer -- which causes more deaths than any other cancer -- if our children keep smoking. That is why we must do everything we can to prevent the 3,000 children who become regular smokers each day. We must also take other critical steps to fight cancer, including expanding access to cancer clinical trials, continuing our commitment to research, and assuring access to quality treatments. With so many families and lives a stake, we can afford to do no less.