Local Lung Cancer Survivor Fights for Research Funding, Quality Healthcare in Washington D.C.
(April 10, 2019) -
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Kansas resident and lung cancer survivor Renee Dietchman traveled to Washington, D.C., this week to meet with her members of Congress to demand action. Through the American Lung Association’s LUNG FORCE initiative, Dietchman stood alongside others personally affected by lung cancer to advocate for biomedical research funding and to ask Congress to protect affordable, adequate and accessible healthcare for people with pre-existing conditions, including lung cancer.
During Advocacy Day, Dietchman met with Representative Sharice Davids, Representative Steve Watkins, Senator Jerry Moran’s staff and Senator Pat Roberts’ staff to share her personal experience with lung cancer and explain why lung cancer research funding and healthcare protections for those with pre-existing conditions is important to her. She unexpectedly found out that she has Stage 4 non-small cell cancer after breaking her arm in a minor car accident. Tumor testing revealed that she was eligible for a newly approved drug treatment, which she is currently taking. After being told that she has 18 months to live, she fought hard and has now been in remission for eight months.
“We have more treatment options and hope than ever before. Remember, I had no symptoms and no inkling of any lung disease. If I can work to help increase research and preventative measures, I believe that I will have fulfilled one of the major purposes of my life. Not everyone is given this chance,” said Dietchman.
There will be are more than 2,000 people in Kansas diagnosed with lung cancer and 1,370 will succumb to the disease in 2019. It’s important to Dietchman to share her story with lawmakers and others so that more can be done to help lung cancer patients and their caregivers throughout the United States and in Kansas.
Dietchman encourages others in Kansas to advocate for lung cancer research and healthcare coverage for people with pre-existing conditions by contacting their members of Congress. Learn more about her story and the LUNG FORCE initiative at LUNGFORCE.org.
About the American Lung Association
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.
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