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Pennsylvania House Health and Human Services Committee Members To Tour Fox Chase Cancer Center

PHILADELPHIA (March 9, 1999) -- Members of the House Health and Human Services Committee lead by Chairman Dennis O'Brien (R-169, Philadelphia) continue a series of tours of the state's premier cancer centers with a stop at Fox Chase Cancer Center on Friday, March 12 at 12:30pm. The tour will include an up-close look at the nation's first Cancer Prevention Pavilion, a visit to laboratories where cutting-edge research is underway and a chance to see the high-tech treatment facilities that make Fox Chase Cancer Center a leader in the nation for cancer research and treatment.

O'Brien's tour comes as lawmakers begin debating how to allocate the state's $11.3 billion from the recent tobacco settlement. Fox Chase and six other premier cancer centers in this state are proposing that 25 percent of the Commonwealth's tobacco settlement money be set aside for cancer research. The other centers included in the proposal are the University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center, Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University, The Wistar Institute, Temple University Cancer Center, Penn State Geisinger Cancer Center, and University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute.

Other representatives expected to tour with Rep. O'Brien include John J. Taylor (R-177, Philadelphia), Louise W. Bishop (D-192, Philadelphia), LeAnna M. Washington (D-200, Philadelphia), Thaddeus Kirkland (D-159, Delaware Co.), Patrick E. Fleagle (R-90, Franklin Co.), and Don R. Walko, (D-20, Allegheny).

The General Assembly will appropriate the money from the tobacco settlement. The first payment to Pennsylvania in the amount of $138 million has already been made to an escrow account. The money will be turned over to the Commonwealth when 80 percent of the states, representing 80 percent of the total allocation, have reached court approval of their settlements and the appeal periods have expired. The state's second payment would be $368 million. After that, Pennsylvania is slated to receive between $398 million and $482 million each year for the next 25 years for a total of $11.3 billion.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health has estimated that over the next 10 years more than 700,000 Pennsylvanians will be diagnosed with cancer. More than 300,000 will die unless more money becomes available to make immediate and notable improvements in prevention research and cancer treatment.

Fox Chase Cancer Center is one of 35 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the nation. The Center's activities include basic and clinical research, prevention, detection and treatment of cancer and community outreach programs.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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