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If it's cancer go to Roswell

By Kevin Ormsby

The Roswell Park Cancer Institute has taken some heavy public shots over the past half year or so, including a one-two punch in the Buffalo News on December 3, 2011 (Roswell Park’s severance deals cost $1.5 million) and December 4, 2011 (Ex-Roswell Park scientist says he was forced out).

In early January of this year, after Albany spoke of possibly eliminating the state contribution to Roswell, the Buffalo News weighed in with a January 22 editorial titled “Cancerous budget cuts” in which they wrote, “the state needs to tread cautiously.”
One can only guess as to the nature of the Buffalo News newsroom politics that caused the paper to write two negative Roswell articles and then come right back with an editorial that cut Roswell slack by hoping “the state won’t abandon Roswell Park.” Yeah. The state may not want to “abandon” one of the best cancer treatment and research centers in the world and the Buffalo News may not want to go on record as supporting state defunding of the renowned institution.

The Niagara Falls Reporter recently carried an eight part series in which Glenn Gramigna candidly recounted his struggle to stay alive in the face of a cancer diagnosis. Glenn is a good person facing a deadly enemy and what he wrote was true to him, albeit not flattering to Roswell.  A trip through the land of cancer diagnosis and treatment is a frightening journey always unique to every individual. We come away each with our own vastly different impressions and memories. To a large extent these impressions are forged literally under the threat of death.

All of the above being what it is, and in light of the fact that I’m in no way an official apologist for Roswell Park, I want to write a few words in support of the Roswell Park Cancer Institute. As a cancer survivor and Roswell patient I’m a little bit familiar with the institution, the personnel and the care they provide.

After several thousand miles of back and forth trips spread over hundreds of hours of care that’s measured across years of medical attention I regret not a mile or a minute or a procedure carried out at Roswell. That’s my own conclusion after treatment at the hands of their physicians, nurses and technicians.

The treating and curing of cancer is a difficult business. Cancer remains a big league life taker and life changer. It’s an illness that gives up its operational secrets very, very grudgingly and presents itself in a frightening number of ways.

So, research goes on, and on.  And that’s where the Roswell Park Cancer Institute enters the picture.

As someone who knows Roswell quite well – as only a cancer survivor can know it – I never hesitate to sincerely tell people, if it is cancer get to Roswell.



Niagara Falls Reporter www.niagarafallsreporter.com Aug 21 , 2012