Local Lung Cancer Survivor Fights for Research Funding, Quality Healthcare in Washington D.C.
Danielle James joins volunteers from every state in D.C. to advocate for lung cancer patients
(April 10, 2019) - OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla.
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Oklahoma resident and lung cancer survivor Danielle James 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, James 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, James met with U.S. Senator James Lankford; U.S. Congressman Tom Cole; and staff for the office of U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe 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. In 2012, at only 25-years-old, she was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer and given only six months to live. After chemotherapy was unsuccessful, she started a targeted therapy, which shrunk the tumors. A few years later, they found that the cancer had spread to her brain. She enrolled in a clinical trial for a new medication that shrunk those tumors as well.
“There is life after diagnosis. As long as I am still breathing, I am going to continue living out my purpose and making the most out of every day. We don't know what the future will hold, but we are excited to continue living,” said James.
There will be more than 3,000 people in Oklahoma diagnosed with lung cancer and 2,200 will succumb to the disease in 2019. It’s important to James 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 Oklahoma.
“It was so much more fun than I expected! I loved getting to share my story with people who are genuinely interested in what I have to say. My story is a real-life example of the importance of lung cancer research funding and the need to protect patients with pre-existing conditions,” said James.
James encourages others in Oklahoma 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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