Biden-Harris Administration Launches Initiative to Improve Cancer Outcomes in Low-Income Areas

July 27, 2023 by Alec Stone MA, MPA, Former ONS Director of Government Affairs and Advocacy

Alleviating the effects of persistent poverty on cancer outcomes requires building research capacity, fostering cancer prevention research, and promoting the implementation of community-based programs. To enhance the United States’ capacity to do so, the Biden-Harris administration awarded ( $50 million in June 2023 to create five new Centers for Cancer Control Research in Persistent Poverty Areas ( that will advance the Cancer Moonshot’s ( priorities.

The Persistent Poverty Initiative (, which the National Cancer Institute (NCI) coordinates, is the first major program to address the structural and institutional factors of persistent poverty in the context of cancer. The administration awarded the five-year funding to the following centers:

“Persistent poverty is a place-based and community phenomenon that reflects a failure of the structures and institutions in society, including health care,” Shobha Srinivasan, PhD, senior advisor for health disparities and health equity in NCI’s Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, said ( “Conducting research to understand the connections between institutions—such as social, economic, and health systems—and persistent poverty is the only way to inform changes to social conditions and determinants of health that will ultimately improve overall health, cancer control, and cancer outcomes.”

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