Metastatic Breast Cancer Network applauds and supports the efforts of National Breast Cancer Coalition (NBCC) to establish a 2020 Deadline to End Breast Cancer. In your recent op-ed piece in the Boston Globe, you laid out a cogent argument for why we need to approach breast cancer with a deadline and a co-ordinated, bold plan, reminiscent of President Kennedy’s challenge to put a man on the moon in a decade. We know all too well the successes and failures of breast cancer treatment, research and advocacy. We live from scan to scan and enthusiastically accept incremental advances in treatment because that is our only choice. We agree that we need a plan that attacks the problems of “organizational and systemic dysfunction that discourages bold new ideas in favor of safe research and predictable results.”
As a voice for the metastatic breast cancer community, we particularly liked your clear statement of goals for the 2020 Deadline campaign:
- preventing people from getting breast cancer in the first place and
- preventing those who get it from dying of it.
Previously this goal had been stated as “preventing metastases,” which left many of us wondering if we were included or not. We already have mets, so it didn’t seem that prevention was going to work for us. Some argued that preventing metastases meant preventing their further spread, but it was still an unclear and contentious issue.
We thank you for clarifying this with a simple phrase: preventing those who get it from dying of it. No doubt there that we are included.
Thank you. We look forward to working together with NBCC.
Michele Przypyszny – President
Metastatic Breast Cancer Network (MBCN)