The president of Georgia Health Sciences University in Augusta wants lawmakers to put funding for the institution’s cancer research back into the state budget.
Starting in 2006 the state gave $5 million a year to GHSU’s cancer research center.
Last year the funding was cut in half and under Governor Nathan Deal’s current budget proposal the center won’t get any state money.
This week President Ricardo Azziz told lawmakers the money is needed to keep the university ahead of the curve for cancer treatment in Georgia where rates of the disease far outpace the national average.
Azziz says no state funding means some patients with rare forms of cancer could be forced to leave the state for help.
"These kinds of cancers require treatment at a center that is developing novel research that is developing new technologies that is understanding different approaches to cancer.
GHSU’s cancer center is among the state’s largest second only to the one at Emory University in Atlanta.