Ask Your Candidates

Dear Research Advocate: If you haven’€™t already heard, ’€œThrowback Thursday’€ is a weekly social media activity that celebrates unforgettable moments in our lives. Users of Facebook, Twitter or Instagram draw inspiration from old photos of family and friends or landmark events, and talk about them, accompanied by the hashtag #TBT. Wouldn’€™t it be great if today’€™s #TBT includes reflections on the impact of medical and health research on our lives and those of our loved ones — especially today, with the mid-term elections coming right up, with so much at stake for future generations? Consider how far we’€™ve come in medicine. This week marks the 100th birthday of Dr. Jonas Salk, who...
Dear Research Advocate: Ebola remains in the news. In the midst of the demoralizing finger pointing that seems to have taken the place of unity of mission that ought to characterize our nation, we are occasionally reminded that science is a problem solver. That’€™s a useful message to convey if we hope to keep the current politicization from worsening. But more of us have to speak out. Don’€™t stand on the sidelines when you could make a difference at this important time when people are paying much more attention to research than usual. With the election only a little over a week away, take the time to ask candidates a question or two. Email or tweet in questions to debates and contact...
Letter to the editor by Research!America President and CEO Mary Woolley published in the Omaha World Herald . This is in response to a Midlands Voices essay ( Finish the job, fund medical research , Sept. 25). The authors’€™ articulate case for robust and sustained investments in lifesaving research represents the interests of all Americans who await cures, as well as better treatments and prevention of Alzheimer’€™s, autism, cancer and diabetes and more. Many Americans believe that elected officials are not doing enough to combat deadly diseases, as they repeatedly cut funding and fail to enact policies that stimulate rather than stifle research. Two-thirds of our fellow citizens say it’€™...
Dear Research Advocate: This week’€™s CDC announcement of the worst-case Ebola scenario is staggering. Saying, ’€œLet’€™s be honest with ourselves ’€¦’€ President Obama addressed the UN this morning on the escalating threat posed by Ebola, urging world leaders to work together to address this truly global crisis. The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) program, which received additional funding for Ebola drug development as part of the recently passed continuing resolution (CR), is a terrific example of how the public and private sectors can work together to develop drugs for national and global health threats like Ebola. BARDA provides market incentives so that...
Dear Research Advocate: I am writing a day early this week since all of us at Research!America will be engaged in our programs tomorrow. If you haven’€™t registered for the National Health Research Forum, there is still time to join us! More details here . Congress is back in town. The House will soon consider a simple, short-term continuing resolution (CR) to fund the government through early December. (Nobody wants a repeat of last year’€™s government shutdown at the beginning of the new fiscal year, October 1.) To offset funding requested by the Administration to help meet the Ebola crisis, as well as to adjust for certain other ’€œanomalies,’€ the CR bill includes a 0.0556% across-the-...
Excerpt of an article published in the Imperial Valley News . Each year in the United States, nearly 16,000 kids are diagnosed with cancer. And on any given day, as many as 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’€™s disease. Beyond its debilitating symptoms, the death rate for Alzheimer’€™s is on the rise. But there are steps you can take to protect your family from these potentially devastating medical conditions. One idea that may come as a surprise to many Americans is to contact your congressional representatives and the candidates for their seats. That’€™s the suggestion of a national, nonpartisan, voter education initiative called ’€œAsk Your Candidates!’€ designed to empower...
One of the fundamental goals of the Ask Your Candidates! (AYC!) initiative is to ensure that medical progress takes its rightful place among the priorities candidates discuss as they vie for a seat in Congress. To further this and the central, voter education agenda of AYC!, we’€™ve launched an ad campaign on POLITICO.com. These ads, which will run through July 27 th , have three different frames, each of which poses a question on the topic of medical progress: 1) What will candidates for Congress do to help kids who need cures? 2) What will candidates for Congress do to help the 30 million Americans with a rare disease? 3) What will candidates for Congress do to help families grow old...
Dear Research Advocate: This week, the research advocacy community suffered a tremendous loss. John Rehm , husband of Diane Rehm, passed away Monday. Diane, the host of The Diane Rehm Show on NPR, was honored by Research!America last year for her advocacy with the Isadore Rosenfeld Award for Impact on Public Opinion . Her late husband was a friend and longtime supporter of the Parkinson’€™s disease community. Our thoughts are with the Rehm family during this difficult time. As you pursue your advocacy efforts, we hope the newest fact sheet in our series about the human impact of research will prove useful. Max Hasenauer was diagnosed at 22-months-old with X-linked Agammaglobulinemia (XLA)...
Selfies are a common form of expression on social media. They can be funny, serious, awkward or emotional. They can also be an impactful way of participating in a cause, which is a big reason we are launching a selfies/photo submission project for the Ask Your Candidates! national voter education initiative. As part of this effort, participants are encouraged to take a photo with a sign ( download here ), indicating why they support medical progress, or they can create their own sign, framing the issue in a way that speaks to their own experiences or organization’€™s mission. The goal is to generate buzz for the initiative and increase the volume of the conversation surrounding medical...
Leading up to Father’€™s Day and as part of National Men’€™s Health Week, the American Cancer Society is raising awareness about risk factors for cancer in men. Among the cancer threats men face, prostate cancer is particularly lethal. In fact, it is the 2nd most deadly cancer for American men behind lung cancer. This year alone in the United States, an estimated 233,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer and 29,480 men will die from the disease. Prostate cancer is also one of the most costly forms of cancer, with $11.9 billion spent on treatment each year in the US. Despite these grim statistics, significant progress has been made in the area of prostate cancer research...

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Funding research gives all of us a better chance of living a healthier life.
Pam Hirata, heart disease survivor