Over the past two years, more than $11 million in new federal funding has been awarded to Esophageal Cancer researchers thanks to the advocacy of the ECAN community.  ECAN launched the campaign to get Esophageal Cancer included in a multi-million dollar cancer research program administered by the Department of Defense in the spring of 2019.  Our goal was to convince Congress to include Esophageal Cancer in the list of cancers eligible for funding through the Peer-Reviewed Cancer Research Program (PRCRP) of the Department of Defense. We were told not to expect to be included until we had advocated for a couple of years. But we were fortunate and Esophageal Cancer was included the first year we asked. And we continue to ask because the list of cancers eligible for funding through the PRCRP is decided by Congress each year – and the fact that we made it on the list one year doesn’t guarantee inclusion in future years.

Collage of screenshots from ECAN’s 2nd Annual Hill Day.

ECAN hosted its second virtual Hill Day on February 28, 2023, with more than 40 members of the ECAN community meeting with the offices of about 90 members of Congress. Beginning on February 27, ECAN also led a Week of Action, providing all members of the ECAN community with the opportunity to take definitive action every day of the week to support increased federal funding for Esophageal Cancer research.

By the time the deadline in the House of Representatives had passed in March, 47 members of Congress had signed on to the letter requesting that appropriators include Esophageal Cancer in the PRCRP authored by Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) and Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), our champions in the House. We are in the midst of our Senate campaign, seeking signers on both sides of the aisle for the letter authored by Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), the first time we have had a Senate champion.

You can make your voice heard to support Esophageal Cancer research funding using our simple platform to send your message at BeatEC.org.

ECAN is hosting a webinar for Esophageal Cancer researchers to help them understand the funding opportunities available and how to effectively apply on Friday, March 31 at Noon Eastern.  Those who register will be sent the recording of the webinar.  Register HERE.