Progress Report


2012 has been a busy year for mesothlioma advocacy.  As the Foundation continued to fulfill its mission to eradicate mesotheliaoma, meso volunteers stormed Capitol Hill on Advocacy Day, inundated their legislators with information about mesothelioma, and engaged the community in the Meso Ambassador Advocacy Program.

Once again this year, Mary Hesdorffer, MS, APRN, nurse practitioner and medical liaison for the Meso Foundation, testified before the United States Senate Committee on Appropriations- Subcommittee on Defense at their Fiscal Year 2013 Appropriations Outside Witness Testimony Hearing.

Ms. Hesdorffer explained the need for sustained and increased funding for mesothelioma through the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program, and stressed the strong link between mesothelioma and military service. She asked that a dedicated funding stream of $5 million be appropriated for mesothelioma through the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, because mesothelioma disproportionally affects American servicemen and women and their families.

“Almost 3,000 Americans die each year of mesothelioma, and one study found that one third of patients were exposed on U.S. Navy ships or shipyards. That is 1,000 U.S. veterans and shipyard workers per year, lost through service to country, just as if they had been on a battlefield,” said Ms. Hesdorffer.

Also, for the first time, the Foundation presented written testimony on the need for increased NIH funding to both the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on Labor, HHS, Education and Related Agencies. This was written from the perspective of meso warrior Bonnie Anderson.

In conjunction with the Annual Symposium in July, advocates were given the opportunity to make individual visits to their Congressional representatives. More than fifty mesothelioma advocates including patients, physicians, caregivers and family members made visits on Capitol Hill to their members of Congress requesting support for increased funding for mesothelioma research.

The Meso Foundation officially launched the Meso Ambassador Program in 2011. The Ambassador Program was developed in response to meso community members who wanted to do more to raise awareness about mesothelioma. Ambassadors receive monthly advocacy assignments to educate their elected officials and community about mesothelioma while advancing the Foundation’s advocacy efforts by sharing their story. To learn more about becoming an ambassador, please click here.

To help us on our mission to eradicate mesothelioma by ensuring federal funding for mesothelioma research and banning asbestos, we are asking members of the Meso Community to visit our Action Center. Through the Action Center you can contact your Senators and your House Representative to ask for their support in sustaining mesothelioma research funding.  We are currently asking advocates to contact their members and ask that they sustain federal funding for medical research as they develop their plan for avoiding sequestration.

The only way to end this deadly disease is to ensure the necessary funding for research is made available.

Take Action Now!

The following links will provide access to tools and information to aid you in your advocacy efforts:

  • Visit the Meso Community ACTION CENTER to contact your legislators
  • Login to our Discussion Board to participate in the Advocacy Blogs



Believe in a Cure!

Contact us here for immediate expert help and a free copy of the book "100 Questions & Answers About Mesothelioma."

(877) END-MESO
(877) 363-6376