Last updated on September 25th, 2019 at 04:50 pm
The Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer (MACC) Fund announced today it will give $25 million, its largest-ever pledge, to advance medical discoveries at the Medical College of Wisconsin and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin related to pediatric cancer and blood disorders.
The investment is aimed at accelerating the development of therapies through the research process, from concept to trial to outcomes assessment; growing high-impact discovery science where early findings can lead to promising research opportunities to advance therapies; and creating new methods of health care delivery that optimize the length and quality of life for pediatric patients.
“Together, the MACC Fund, Medical College of Wisconsin, and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, have journeyed for more than four decades to advance hope and lifesaving solutions for kids and their families,” said Becky Pinter, president and chief executive officer of the MACC Fund. “The MACC Fund feels compelled to take the lead in making a bold commitment to build on the progress we have made, accelerate options for treatment and find a cure for pediatric cancer and blood disorders. As partners, we are proud to lead the way into the next frontier of pediatric cancer research and transform lives.”
The leading disease-related cause of death among children, pediatric cancer causes more than 1,800 deaths each year in the United States.
“This unique partnership between the MACC Fund, Medical College of Wisconsin and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin positions us to lead this new era with innovation, discovery, collaboration, and a ceaseless commitment to fight for our kids,” said Dr. John Raymond, president and chief executive officer of MCW. “We are inspired and grateful for this generous commitment and legacy of partnership from the MACC Fund. Their pledge will enable our researchers to continue to drive innovation and push technology to advance the next revolution in therapies that will enable the best possible outcomes for kids. It is only by working in collaboration that we can make an impact, and I am confident that – together – we will impact the lives of countless children and their families.”
In announcing the financial pledge, the organizations cited the story of Raphael Ordan, who in 2017 learned he had Hodgkin lymphoma at age 17.
Dr. Paul Harker-Murray, who specializes in pediatric hematology/oncology at MCW and Children’s Hospital, enrolled him in a clinical trial offering a new treatment. He made a change in the medication to reduce the risk of future pulmonary fibrosis or other complications, and after two treatments, Ordan was cancer free.
The organizations said it’s example of what their partnership can do for more children.
“Kids battling cancer in Wisconsin have access to the best possible care and have significantly better outcomes, largely because of the generous efforts of the donors and advocates who support the MACC Fund,” said Peggy Troy, president and CEO of Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. “The Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin MACC Fund Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders sees some of the toughest cases in Wisconsin. As partners, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, the MACC Fund and the Medical College of Wisconsin share a mutual goal of increasing survival rates for these kids and improving the quality of life for all survivors.”
The MACC Fund was founded in 1976 by Jon McGlocklin, a Milwaukee Bucks player-turned-announcer, and then Bucks play-by-play announcer Eddie Doucette, whose two-year-old son Brett had been diagnosed with cancer. It has raised a total of $65 million over the years for childhood cancer and blood disorder research.