MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Governor Rick Scott spent Friday afternoon in Miami.
He was at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center along with members of the University of Miami Health System to highlight cancer research funding. University of Miami President Donna E. Shalala was with Scott at the event.
The visit was part of the “It’s Your Money Tax Cut Budget” which includes an $80 million proposed investment for cancer research funding.
The Governor’s proposed budget includes $60 million for existing Florida Cancer Centers to assist in achieving National Cancer Institute designation, and another $20 million commitment for peer-reviewed research grants.
Dr. Stephen Nimer, director of Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center explained. “We have only one NCI designated institute in the state and we’re poised to be the next one.”
Governor Rick Scott said, “We’ll get more research here. We’ll get more clinical trials here.”
Dr. Nimer talked about the importance of cancer research to the state of Florida which he says is second only to California in incidences of cancer.
“People may or may not think about cancer if they don’t have it , young people. It’s not the thing people think about, but we need the resources here so when people do get sick we can respond immediately,” said Nimer.
“I couldn’t imagine being treated anywhere else because everyone is so friendly here and the care is so very good,” said Billy Thies, 17, who was diagnosed with a tumor on his tibia when he was 16.
After six months of intensive chemotherapy, Thies is cancer free. He’s a senior in high school planning a future writing and directing films. He’s also looking forward to seeing how Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center uses the money it receives.
“I really want to come back and see what kind of treatments kids 10 years from now are going be getting, not only kids but people in general. I’m very excited to see what the progress is,” he said.