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WHEREAS, childhood cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children; and
WHEREAS, 1 in 285 children in the United States will be diagnosed with cancer by their 20th birthday; and
WHEREAS, the American Cancer Society reports estimates that 10,590 new cases of childhood cancer are expected to occur among children ages fourteen and younger in 2018; and
WHEREAS, since 1975, childhood cancer incidence rates have slowly increased by 0.6 percent per year; and
WHEREAS, due to high participation and advancements in medical treatments, mortality rates in childhood cancer have declined over the past four decades; however, despite such advances, 1,800 children die of cancer each year in the United States; and
WHEREAS, two-thirds of childhood cancer patients will have chronic health conditions as a result of their treatment toxicity, with one quarter being classified as severe to life-threatening; and
WHEREAS, approximately one half of childhood cancer families rate the associated financial toxicity due to out-of-pocket expenses as considerable to severe; and
WHEREAS, researchers and healthcare professionals work diligently to improve the quality of life for children with cancer; and
WHEREAS, throughout the Commonwealth, organizations, advocates, and hospitals work to increase awareness of the signs of childhood cancer, advocate for active cancer screening tests and treatments, and support the families affected by childhood cancer; and
WHEREAS, the determination and bravery with which these children fight their battles against cancer should be recognized and commended by all; and
WHEREAS, it is vital that those affected by childhood cancer have access to quality, affordable care, and that research of all forms of childhood cancer continues to be vigorously supported;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize September 2018 as CHILDHOOD CANCER AWARENESS MONTH in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.