Our legislators in Austin are debating a subject this week that could influence cancer care all over Texas. The concern is if lawmakers say no to CPRIT, which stands for the Cancer Prevention Research Institute of Texas, there will be no more funding for important clinical trials... some of which are already underway here at Texas Tech.
Dr. Patrick Reynolds leads the School of Medicine Cancer Center here in Lubbock. "CPRIT provides the second largest amount of funding in the entire country for cancer research, second only to the Federal Government to the National Cancer Institute, yet only does it in Texas. Seventy-five percent of all the cancer research funding in West Texas comes from CPRIT. So without CPRIT, West Texas is going to be virtually a wasteland in terms of funding for cancer research." "The current news reporting in the legislators are hearing nothing but what went wrong with the administration of CPRIT. No one has asked the question, 'What great science, or clinical trials, or new drugs are coming out of CPRIT?' 'What breast cancer screening is now saving lives in West Texas because of CPRIT?' And there are, right now those dollars are at work right now, but if we lose them, then they won't be there next year."
There is another side to the story. State auditors have questioned some documentation, which is why the debate continues in Austin. But Dr. Reynolds suggests a website that explains the accomplishments of CPRIT, and what we stand to lose in West Texas if it is not funded. A Lubbock breast cancer survivor is featured in that video.
That video is available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKPHjUymnTM&feature=youtu.be
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