Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. recently wrote a letter to President Joe Biden to issue a presidential proclamation and declare March as National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. The move comes in the same week that Payne, Jr. wrote a separate letter to the president to increase funding for colorectal cancer research.
“When detected early, colorectal cancer has one of the highest recovery rates of any cancer,” said Payne, Jr. “But there is still too much that we do not know about this deadly disease. We need to increase funding and awareness of colorectal cancer so people have more confidence about getting screened, which will lead to more people being treated and save thousands of American lives.”
Colorectal cancer is the second deadliest form of cancer and it has been one of the Congressman’s leading issues in Congress since his father, Congressman Donald Payne, Sr., died of the disease in 2012. Rep. Payne, Jr. asks for the presidential proclamation every year to bring more awareness to colorectal cancer. He has been a staunch advocate for bills and other actions that aim to defeat the disease. Last year, Rep. Payne, Jr.’s bill to improve colorectal cancer screenings, the Removing Barriers to Colorectal Cancer Screening Act, was signed into law. Now, Medicare recipients can get their colorectal cancer screenings and treatments during the screenings covered under the Medicare program. Before the bill, Medicare would cover screenings, but not treatments for the disease. The letter was co-signed by 41 members of Congress.