Over 40 Medical Organizations Call for an End to the Government Shutdown


Forty-six medical advocacy organization and professional societies have called on President Donald Trump, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConell, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to end the government shutdown and, in particular, addressed its impact on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The recently released letter is reproduced in full below.

Dear Mr. President, Speaker Pelosi, Leader McConnell, Leader Schumer, and Leader McCarthy,

The undersigned organizations, representing millions of American patients, caregivers, health-care providers, and researchers write to raise alarm at the continued government shutdown—particularly its impact on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The work of the FDA to protect the health and well-being of our nation cannot be overstated. The agency regulates one-quarter of the U.S. economy, ensures a safe food supply, protects patients from contaminated and unsafe medical products and, importantly, is the catalyst for expediting lifesaving therapies to patients.

On behalf of patients across this country, we are greatly concerned that the agency is currently not fully funded, and thousands of vital FDA employees are not working or able to operate at full capacity. While we applaud Commissioner Gottlieb, FDA leadership, and “essential staff” for truly heroic work to keep many aspects of its mission functioning, we fear that this continued shutdown not only puts the current health and safety of Americans at risk, but has begun to put future scientific discovery and innovation in jeopardy.

The ongoing government shutdown forces the FDA to make difficult choices regarding to which essential functions its greatly reduced resources are directed. These are decisions that never should have to be made—the health and safety of Americans today should never be weighed against the prospect of new life-saving therapies for patients. Tragically, that is what is happening.

We ask that the President and Congress act immediately to bring the FDA back to its full capacity. Americans’ health and patients’ futures are at stake.


Acromegaly Community

Addario Lung Cancer Medical Institute

AIM at Melanoma


Alliance for Aging Research

American Academy of Pediatrics

American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO)

American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy

Annie Appleseed Project

Association of American Cancer Institutes (AACI)

Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation

Bridge the Gap - SYNGAP Education and Research Foundation


Children's Cause for Cancer Advocacy

Cutaneous Lymphoma Foundation

Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowerment (FORCE)

Fight Colorectal Cancer

Friends of Cancer Research

Institute of Clinical Bioethics, Saint Joseph's University

Kidney Cancer Action Network (KCAN)

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

Living Beyond Breast Cancer

Lung Cancer Alliance

LUNGevity Foundation

Lupus and Allied Diseases Association, Inc

Lymphoma Research Foundation

Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF)

Men’s Health Network

National Alliance on Mental Illness

National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship (NCCS)

National Consumers League

National Multiple Sclerosis Society

National Organization for Rare Diseases (NORD)

National Osteoporosis Foundation

National Patient Advocate Foundation

NTM Info & Research, Inc.

Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance

Pancreatic Cancer Action Network

Patients for Affordable Drugs Personalized Medicine Coalition

Prevent Cancer Foundation

Research Advocacy Network


St. Baldrick's Foundation

Stand Up To Cancer

Swifty Foundation

The content in this post has not been reviewed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) and does not necessarily reflect the ideas and opinions of ASCO®.