It is unacceptable that there is a cancer for which the relative five-year survival rate is still in the single digits at just 6 percent, particularly when you consider that the overall five-year relative survival for all cancers is now 68 percent.
Even more alarming, pancreatic cancer is anticipated to move from the fourth to the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the U.S. by 2020.
This year alone, this terrible disease will claim the lives of 1,990 people in Pennsylvania.
Patients and their loved ones cannot wait any longer. It is essential that we make research into pancreatic cancer a priority in this country so that real progress can be made toward better treatment options, early detection and a cure.
I am a volunteer for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and am grateful to State College for passing an awareness proclamation that recognizes November as National Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month.
The proclamation will also raise awareness about this devastating disease and encourage our elected officials to make fighting pancreatic cancer a priority.
We must support those who have been afflicted by this disease and advocate for greater awareness and more resources to fight pancreatic cancer.