We told you earlier how honored we were to have The New York Times blogger Suleika Jaouad, an acute myeloid leukemia survivor, speak to our advocates on Mission Day 2013 on June 4, and join us for meetings on Capitol Hill. Suleika just posted her latest “Life, Interrupted” blog last night in which she discusses her experience as a participant at our Mission Day, and the importance of persuading legislators to take steps to improve access to quality health care for all patients.
Mission Day was a resounding success with more than 232 advocates attending more than 230 meetings on Capitol Hill. Our advocates impressed upon the legislators and their staff the importance of supporting HR 1801, the Cancer Drug Coverage Parity Act, and HR 460, the Patients Access to Treatments Act. We increased the number of co-sponsors who have signed onto these important bills: HR 460 has six new co-sponsors (four Democrats and two Republicans); and HR 1801 has 12 new official co-sponsors. Moreover, we identified several members and staff with personal connections to blood cancer, which will be very helpful in engaging them moving forward.
Your response to our outreach before, during and after the event was tremendous: 6,924 signed our online petition pledging to support the LLS mission and its advocacy efforts; 157 people shared their stories online; and we reached 735,301 via Facebook and 101,823 via Twitter.
Visit here to learn more about LLS’s advocacy initiatives or to become an advocate yourself and raise your voice in the fight against blood cancers.