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State Treasurer has treatment for cancer recurrence

October 24, 2009

State Treasurer Ben Westlund receiving treatment for recurrence of cancer, is confident of recovery.  The flare-up was detected early and Westlund remains at work while undergoing therapy
BY State Treasurer Office,

SALEM – Oregon Treasurer Ben Westlund is receiving treatment to combat a recurrence of cancer, he disclosed today in a letter to his staff at the Oregon State Treasury. Westlund, 60, who previously had lung cancer, receives regular scans to quickly detect any return. He said he started treatment earlier this year, but remains on the job and expressed confidence the treatments will be successful.

“As part of my regularly scheduled exam, my doctor discovered that cancer has returned and I am working with several of Oregon’s finest doctors to undergo treatment to fight it,” he said. “Like thousands of Oregonians who live with cancer every day, I continue to work… and I continue to work hard to make Treasury better and to benefit the lives of all Oregonians.”

Westlund said the availability of electronic detection was important for an early diagnosis that makes it easier to target and combat a localized region. His personal situation illustrates the importance of ensuring quality health care is available to all Oregonians, he said.

As a state Senator, Westlund was one of the authors of the Hope for Healthy Oregon initiative and helped to develop the framework for the Oregon Health Authority that was approved by the 2009 Legislative assembly. He was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2003, but the cancer went into remission after surgery and treatment.
He entered the Legislature in 1997 and was elected Treasurer in 2008. Westlund, who is married and has two children, asked for privacy and goodwill.

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Marvin McConoughey October 24, 2009

Oregon Treasurer Ben Westlund is a former smoker. Smoking is strongly implicated in many lung cancers. I applaud his public optimism. Treatment permanently cures few, as a tobacco using colleague once sadly discovered.

orpolitico October 24, 2009

Oregon Treasurer Ben Westlund is a former smoker

Um…no he isn’t, and shame on you for assuming such. His exposure was secondhand.

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