New cancer patients' coalition aims to change the face of European health policy

September 23, 2003

Cancer is one of the biggest health problems in Europe today, said former patient and UK television presenter Lynn Faulds Wood at a press conference at ECCO 12 - The European Cancer Conference in Copenhagen today (Tuesday 23 September). She was announcing the formation of European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC), the first pan-European patient group to represent all the major forms of the disease.

Ms Faulds Wood, who set up Lynn's Bowel Cancer Campaign in the UK after being diagnosed with bowel cancer 12 years ago, said that she had been shocked to discover that there were still so many inequalities in access to treatment and knowledge of best practice across Europe. "We hope that this new group will enable us to highlight some of these problems to policy makers, and empower patients - the people who are the most directly affected - to ask questions about them. No-one with cancer should have to put up with sub-standard treatment just because they don't know that there is anything better in another country, or even another region of the same country," she said.

The Coalition hopes to become the natural first point of reference for European institutions when seeking the opinions of cancer patients. "To date there has been no fully representative body to which the European Commission, for example, could turn," said Ms Faulds Wood "and this has meant that they have often been given inappropriate advice by groups which are not able to see the full picture."

Members of the Coalition intend to influence European health policymaking, affirm the rights of cancer patients, ensure access to appropriate screening, treatment and care, and to promote the advancement of cancer research. To ensure that their voice is both strong and representative, they will work together with the scientific and professional cancer community in lobbying policymakers.

"It is time that all cancer patients had a properly representative forum to help them help themselves", said Ms Faulds Wood. "There is much that we can achieve by working together across Europe."

" HIV/AIDS patients have shown us the way. Their activism, coupled with their understanding of how to influence policymakers, drug regulators, and clinicians, forced their inclusion into the decision making process. We see the Coalition as becoming the same kind of potent political force for good, and achieving results not just for those who have been diagnosed with cancer, but for those in whom it can be prevented before it starts", she said.
-end-


ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation

Related Cancer Articles from Brightsurf:

New blood cancer treatment works by selectively interfering with cancer cell signalling
University of Alberta scientists have identified the mechanism of action behind a new type of precision cancer drug for blood cancers that is set for human trials, according to research published in Nature Communications.

UCI researchers uncover cancer cell vulnerabilities; may lead to better cancer therapies
A new University of California, Irvine-led study reveals a protein responsible for genetic changes resulting in a variety of cancers, may also be the key to more effective, targeted cancer therapy.

Breast cancer treatment costs highest among young women with metastic cancer
In a fight for their lives, young women, age 18-44, spend double the amount of older women to survive metastatic breast cancer, according to a large statewide study by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Cancer mortality continues steady decline, driven by progress against lung cancer
The cancer death rate declined by 29% from 1991 to 2017, including a 2.2% drop from 2016 to 2017, the largest single-year drop in cancer mortality ever reported.

Stress in cervical cancer patients associated with higher risk of cancer-specific mortality
Psychological stress was associated with a higher risk of cancer-specific mortality in women diagnosed with cervical cancer.

Cancer-sniffing dogs 97% accurate in identifying lung cancer, according to study in JAOA
The next step will be to further fractionate the samples based on chemical and physical properties, presenting them back to the dogs until the specific biomarkers for each cancer are identified.

Moffitt Cancer Center researchers identify one way T cell function may fail in cancer
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers have discovered a mechanism by which one type of immune cell, CD8+ T cells, can become dysfunctional, impeding its ability to seek and kill cancer cells.

More cancer survivors, fewer cancer specialists point to challenge in meeting care needs
An aging population, a growing number of cancer survivors, and a projected shortage of cancer care providers will result in a challenge in delivering the care for cancer survivors in the United States if systemic changes are not made.

New cancer vaccine platform a potential tool for efficacious targeted cancer therapy
Researchers at the University of Helsinki have discovered a solution in the form of a cancer vaccine platform for improving the efficacy of oncolytic viruses used in cancer treatment.

American Cancer Society outlines blueprint for cancer control in the 21st century
The American Cancer Society is outlining its vision for cancer control in the decades ahead in a series of articles that forms the basis of a national cancer control plan.

Read More: Cancer News and Cancer Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.