Thank you California for Protecting Cancer Patients

CA Cancer Patients Bill of Rights

In 2021, City of Hope and a coalition of organizations committed to expanding equitable access to cancer care helped establish the first in the nation Cancer Patients Bill of Rights. It stated that all cancer patients, regardless of their means, should have access to the latest life-saving cancer research and treatments. The Bill of Rights was passed unanimously by the California Legislature in August 2021.

Thank You for Supporting Cancer Care Equity for Californians! Cancer Patients Shouldn’t Face Unfair Barriers to Care.

CA Cancer Care Equity Act

Building on the success of the Bill of Rights, the Cancer Care is Different coalition worked with policymakers in 2022 to introduce the California Cancer Care Equity Act. The CCCEA would remove unfair barriers that disproportionately prevent Californians in underserved communities from accessing optimal cancer care. The legislature passed the CCCEA and it was signed into law by Gov. Newsom in September 2022. The CCCEA reformed California’s Medi-Cal program that serves nearly 14 million beneficiaries to facilitate access to life-saving care for patients with a complex cancer diagnosis.


Less than half of California cancer patients received care aligned with national guidelines. With some 193,880 Californians expected to be diagnosed with cancer each year, increasing access to the optimal treatment for a patient’s diagnosis is critical – and can save lives.1

Fighting for Cancer Care Equity in California

For too long, too many patients—especially those historically underserved—have been denied the opportunity to equally benefit from the latest advancements in cancer care. Recognition of these disparities in access and the connection between access and survival is the first step on a path toward more equitable, more effective cancer care for all of Californians.

Californians insured with Medi-Cal suffer much worse-than-average outcomes for several cancer diagnoses, including lung cancer, and breast cancer, compared to those with other forms of insurance.2


34% of cancer deaths among all U.S. adults ages 25 to 74 could be prevented if socioeconomic disparities were eliminated.3


Leukemia patients receiving care from designated specialists saw a 54% reduction in the odds of early mortality.4