<--GAT-->

John P. Murtha Cancer Center Named for Late Congressman Who Supported Research

by U.S. Medicine

January 11, 2013

By Sandra Basu

Rep. John P. Murtha (D-PA)

Bethesda MD – Walter Reed National Military Medical Center honored the late Rep. John P. Murtha last month by renaming its comprehensive cancer center in memory of the Pennsylvania congressman.

At an event attended by Murtha’s family, DoD leaders and many members of Congress, it was announced that the new DoD center of excellence for cancer care would be called the John P. Murtha Cancer Center.

The cancer center, which employs more than 330 staffers is a 74,000-square-foot facility with an additional 43,312 square feet of off-campus research space.

“The John C. Murtha Cancer Center is an investment in the future of military medicine,” said Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs Jonathan Woodson, MD. “It will continue to pay dividends to Americans and people who fight our country’s wars far into the future for many decades to come.”

The event also was a tribute to the late congressman, who had served in the Marine Corps and went on to champion military causes in Congress.

Murtha, who died in 2010, was credited with helping to create the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP) in 1992. The program was created in response by lobbying by consumer groups to do more to address breast cancer, including complaints by military spouses that mammograms were not being offered at military hospitals.

As chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, Murtha responded by steering $25 million into the Pentagon budget for mammograms. He would go on to direct more than $2.5 billion for the DoD peer-reviewed breast cancer research program (BCRP), which is part of the CDMRP portfolio. The program has funded thousands of breast cancer-related research proposals from around the country.

Joyce Murtha, his widow, noted how proud he would have been to have his name on the center. She said that “cancer research was one way he felt he could make a lasting impact.”

House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who spoke on behalf of the congressional delegation attending the event, remarked on Murtha’s skills as a lawmaker. She said that to watch him legislate, was to watch “a master at work.”

“I continue to hold that view,” she said. “He was a champion of Johnstown and his beloved state of Pennsylvania, a giant in the Congress, a hero on the battlefield, a strong voice for progress.”


Related Articles

Suicide risk under-appreciated among advanced lung cancer patients

Much of the focus on suicide at the VA is on recently discharged servicemembers who suffer from conditions such as depression or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

DoD acknowledges its medical adverse event reporting is ‘unreliable’

The process for tracking the DoD’s most serious adverse medical events is “fragmented, impeding the Defense Health Agency’s (DHA) ability to ensure that it has received complete information,” according to a new review.


U.S. Medicine Recommends


More From department of defense dod

Department of Defense (DoD)

DoD acknowledges its medical adverse event reporting is ‘unreliable’

The process for tracking the DoD’s most serious adverse medical events is “fragmented, impeding the Defense Health Agency’s (DHA) ability to ensure that it has received complete information,” according to a new review.

Department of Defense (DoD)

Automation Speeds Results and Increases Accuracy for Point-of-Care Testing at Walter Reed NMMC

With a long history of point of care testing at both of its predecessor organizations, the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) laboratory services staff were keenly aware of the advantages of using portable testing devices to obtain rapid patient assessments.

Department of Defense (DoD)

High Rate of Pectoralis Tears Among Deployed Servicemembers Lifting Weights

Lifting weights is one way servicemembers keep in peak physical condition during deployment.

Department of Defense (DoD)

DoD Study Finds That Type 2 Diabetes Increases Breast Cancer Mortality

Having Type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM-2) increases mortality risk in breast cancer patients, regardless of whether diabetes was diagnosed before or after breast cancer, according to a recent study.

Department of Defense (DoD)

Now Hear This: Otolaryngologist Leads Effort to Prevent Auditory Issues

Among those who are exposed to combat, it’s the weapons fire that does it. In the Navy, it’s the noise levels in engine rooms and on the decks of carriers.

Facebook Comment

Subscribe to U.S. Medicine Print Magazine

U.S. Medicine is mailed free each month to physicians, pharmacists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and administrators working for Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and U.S. Public Health Service.

Subscribe Now

Receive Our Email Newsletter

Stay informed about federal medical news, clinical updates and reports on government topics for the federal healthcare professional.

Sign Up