Global Liver Institute Applauds Congresswoman Velázquez and Senator Duckworth for Bold Action on Liver Cancer

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(Washington, DC, Friday, October 22, 2021)—Global Liver Institute (GLI) CEO and President, Donna R. Cryer, JD,  yesterday applauded the actions of U.S. Representative Nydia Velázquez (D-NY), and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) to improve the lives of all people impacted by liver disease.

A 27-year liver transplant recipient, Cryer said “Through both of your leadership, and the reintroduction of the the Liver Illness, Visibility, Education and Research Act (LIVER Act) in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, as well as the Recognizing October 2021 as Liver Cancer Awareness Month Resolution in the House, we can move the field forward and shift the conversation to shine a spotlight on liver cancer, and liver cancer health disparities.”

The need for urgent Congressional action becomes evident when we consider that since 1980 the incidence of liver cancer in the United States has tripled, and death rates have nearly doubled.

These concerns are further amplified when we consider the enduring racial and ethnic liver cancer health disparities that we have sought to eliminate for years, including:

  • Asian Americans are four times more likely to have liver cancer than any other ethnic population;

  • Excess liver cancer incidence and liver cancer mortality are highest among non-Hispanic Black males versus other races;

  • U.S. Hispanics have a liver cancer incidence rate that is almost two times higher than non-Hispanic whites;

  • Asian Americans comprise 60% of the U.S. population living with Hepatitis B, the leading risk factor for liver cancer;

  • American Indian/Alaskan Natives have a liver cancer mortality rate almost two times higher than non-Hispanic whites

Liver cancer disparities reflect the interplay amongst many factors, including social determinants of health, behavior and genetics. Yet, according to the American Cancer Society, up to 70% of liver cancer cases could be prevented by increased uptake of hepatitis B vaccination, hepatitis C cures, and lifestyle management and development of treatments for fatty liver disease. The LIVER Act, and the resolution, rightfully act as a crucial first step towards addressing many of these factors.

With the reintroduction, and introduction of these important pieces of legislation, we now need your help to urge other Members of Congress to cosponsor each of these bills, urge action on each within Congressional committees, and support their inclusion in other legislation. We also encourage you to sign and share GLI’s Liver Cancer Call To Action, pledging support to double the five-year survival rate for liver cancer.

About Global Liver Institute

Global Liver Institute (GLI) is the only patient-created and patient-driven nonprofit organization tackling liver health and all liver disease holistically. Rooted in the belief that liver health must take its place on the global public health agenda commensurate with the prevalence and impact of liver illness, GLI promotes innovation, encourages collaboration and supports the scaling of optimal approaches to help eradicate liver diseases. Operating globally, GLI is committed to solving the problems that matter to liver patients, equipping advocates to improve the lives of individuals and families impacted by liver disease. Follow GLI on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube.