WASHINGTON D.C. – Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) recently introduced a bill to renew congressional approval for the breast cancer research stamp, which has raised $80.4 million for breast cancer research since its creation in 1998. Representatives Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) and Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.) introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.
The breast cancer research stamp provides first-class postage and currently costs 60 cents. The additional 11 cents over the regular postal rate helps fund breast cancer research at the National Institutes of Health and the Medical Research Program at the Department of Defense. This bill would reauthorize the stamp through 2019. If the stamp is not reauthorized by the end of the year, it will no longer be available to the public.
“Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women, claiming 40,000 lives each year,” said Senator Feinstein. “This stamp offers Americans a simple way to contribute to breast cancer research. The research funded by the stamp over the past 17 years has led to advances in screening, diagnosis and treatment—we must ensure this research continues.”
“With over 200,000 individuals diagnosed with breast cancer each year in the United States the importance of continued research to combat this deadly disease is as important as ever,” said Senator Enzi. “This stamps provides the opportunity for anyone to make a small contribution to breast cancer research that can help make a big difference.”
Proceeds from the stamp help fund the National Cancer Institute’s breast cancer research programs. These programs focus on how to improve early detection of breast cancer. Scientists study how cancers originate and develop in order to improve prevention, screening, diagnosis and treatment.
Scientists also research how to identify markers that precede the development of breast cancer, find better ways to predict whether tumors and lesions found through cancer screening are likely to become life-threatening and investigate links between pregnancy factors and breast cancer risk.
The bill is supported by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Association for Cancer Research, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, the American College of Surgeons, Are You Dense Advocacy, Breast Cancer Fund, Center for Women Policy Studies, Susan G. Komen, Breast Cancer Research Foundation and Tigerlily Foundation.