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Delaware continues to improve its score in annual cancer policy report

New data indicates Delaware’s policies for treating and preventing cancer are continuing to improve.

The American Cancer Society released its annual report rating states on cancer policies Thursday. The report grades eight subcategories measuring cancer prevention and access to care with either green, yellow or red marks to indicate whether a state is doing well, making progress or falling short.

Delaware got five green: Increased access to Medicaid, pain policy, cigarette tax rates, smoke free laws and indoor tanning device restrictions.

And three yellow: Access to palliative care, tobacco prevention funding and Medicaid coverage of tobacco prevention.

Marianne Carter is a Delaware cancer survivor who volunteers for the cancer society. She says Delaware’s score put it ahead of most other states.

“So we are really making a lot of progress on promoting policies in the state that will reduce suffering and death from cancer,” said Carter.

But Carter adds there’s more work to do.

“We have not met the benchmark for fully funding tobacco prevention and cessation and that’s what we’re hoping this report will help legislators, kind of, set out a path for moving forward,” she said.

Carter says a Delaware’s cancer coalition is working towards expanding palliative care throughout the state to treat patients for the incidental symptoms and stress resulting from cancer treatment. She says a lack of state regulation in that regard earned Delaware its yellow grade.

Delaware has consistently improved its score on the American Cancer Society state policy report since 2015.

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