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Fall in Funding

The California Cancer Registry is facing a shortfall in funding that could place its work in jeopardy, the Los Angeles Times reports.

It adds that the registry, which collects data on cancer cases in the state, is funded in part through a 25-cent tax on packs of cigarettes but as fewer people now smoke, the program is facing a budget decrease of $1.6 million. The LA Times adds, though, that the registry could lose even more in funding, as the California Cancer Registry also receives $13 million from National Cancer Institute, but that that funding is contingent on the program providing a certain amount of matching funds.

Additionally, Lihua Liu, director of the Los Angeles Cancer Surveillance Program, tells the LA Times that the registry could also lose its federal funding if it cannot provide timely and complete data, which could also be difficult with a reduced budget.

Advocates and lawmakers are now calling on California to boost the registry's funding from the state's general allocation fund and to make longer-term changes to how the program is funded, as cigarette sales are expected to continue to fall, the LA Times says.

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