There has been widespread national support including in Illinois of a National Mesothelioma Registry. As of July 25, 2019, Dr. Robert Cameron does not see the benefit in establishing the registry. The longtime leader thinks the money used to create a registry would be better suited helping patients in other ways.
The thoracic surgeon has an international respect as a pioneer in the field. Dr. Cameron was originally a supporter but has since changed his position with the addition of new information. Both the National Cancer Database and National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program offer a similar resource.
While the federal government has put $1.2 million in the National Mesothelioma Virtual Bank, the created registry does not seem to live up to the money spent on creating it. Despite many Mesothelioma advocates wanting a registry, Dr. Cameron does not feel the current virtual bank offers little to researchers.
The quest for a Congressionally-funded registry is still a key point of advocacy for many in the field including Dr. Michael Becich. Dr. Becich is currently the principal investigator for the National Mesothelioma Virtual Bank and feels there are many advantages to the patient community. Currently Congress supports a national registry for many other diseases including cystic fibrosis and Alzheimer’s disease.
While there is no consensus on who would run the national registry should there be one, many still feel the need to pursue one. A national registry is still years in the making, but patients may have some financial recourse by contacting an attorney who specializes in Mesothelioma.