On Wednesday, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform held a hearing titled “Federally Funded Cancer Research: Coordination and Innovation.”
At this hearing, the committee heard testimony from Tammi Carr, mother of Chad Carr, who passed away from a rare brain tumor at the age of 4. Tammi Carr founded the ChadTough foundation, raising money for rare forms of pediatric cancer. The committee also heard from Mary Beckerle, CEO and director of the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah, Elizabeth Jaffee, deputy director of the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at the Johns Hopkins University, and Tyler Jacks, director of the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
These testimonies focused on the many successes leading to innovations regarding cancer research in the previous decades, while recognizing that there is so much more work to be done. Additionally, their testimonies focused on President Donald Trump’s proposed $5.8 billion cut to the National Institutes of Health and how these cuts would be detrimental to future cancer research endeavors, including the proposed cuts resulting in no new grants being funded at the National Cancer Institute in fiscal 2018. All testimonies underscored the importance of sustained NIH funding.
While some committee members expressed the need for more efficient spending at the NIH, nobody showed support for massive budget cuts. All committee members clearly understood the value of the NIH.