New initiative aimed at prevention, early detection of liver cancer

Texas has highest liver cancer incidence rate in US

SAN ANTONIO – A new initiative to raise awareness about liver cancer has been created to stop the growing number of people being diagnosed with the disease in its late stages.

While the problem is one that affects the nation, Texas is especially impacted by the disease with the highest liver cancer incidence rate in the U.S. 

The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas will invest up to $18 million to fund the state's first collaborative action program for liver cancer. 

The money will fund prevention and early-detection policies.

"We're talking about the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas and the prevention and early-detection service that this institute provides across the state. A lot of Texans don't realize the value the CPRIT brings," said Cam Scott, Texas government relations spokesman for the American Cancer Society. "But there are thousands of lives that have been saved because of the prevention and early-detection screenings that are available through CPRIT."

The organization is currently in operation, but is facing a critical need for funding.

The program was established via bonds. The legislature will need to decide next session whether it wants to continue funding the group's work.

That session begins in January.