An extra $37 million to be spent in 2022-23
On May 17 Florida's Governor Ron DeSantis was joined at a press conference by his wife Casey, to announce that $100 million of state funding is to be directed towards cancer research and treatment in the 2022-23 financial year. This is $37 million more than was previously allocated in the state budget, and represents the significance of this cause to the Governor, his wife and to Floridians more generally.
Cancer remains the second highest cause of death in Florida behind heart disease.
The governor's personal project?
The announcement, made at the University of Miami's Don Soffer Clinical Research Center, jointly with the state's Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo, appears to represent the governor delivering on a plan that has been in progress for a number of months.
Casey DeSantis, herself a survivor of breast cancer, has often talked of the plan as the governors own pet project - a proposal to distribute $100 million of funding to three key centers in Florida: the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami, the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa, and the University of Florida Health System’s Shands Cancer Hospital in Gainesville.
Commenting on the funding, the governor shared his hopes:
“We really have confidence in these institutions ... to make good use of that money and to do so in a way that will have meaningful impact on the lives of the patients that they will be seeing.”
Mrs DeSantis only recently returned to the campaign trail at the governor's side - proclaiming at a recent event that it was good to be back.
Florida focuses on healthcare
It has been a big week for funding of the healthcare industry in Florida. Earlier this week the governor announced $125 million to be spent on addressing the shortage of nurses in the state. While this appears to have been allocated reactively following protests outside of the State Capitol last week, the money will nonetheless be welcomed if it means more qualified nurses in the state in coming years.
Spending money on something as important as treating and researching a disease as horrific as cancer seems incredibly worthwhile, and could have an impact far beyond Florida too.
Have you or someone in your family been affected by cancer? Would you like to see more money spent on researching the disease and treating patients or are there other things that need more money and attention? Let me know in the comments section below.