Renew Europe calls for a comprehensive European strategy in the war on cancer

Author: Miguel Antony M Chevalier

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Renew Europe welcomes that the Special Committee for Beating Cancer (BECA) has today broadly supported the report by MEP Véronique Trillet-Lenoir on a European Plan to combat cancer. Every year, 1,3 million people still die of cancer in Europe, including 6000 children. In the report, Véronique Trillet – Lenoir, herself a cancer specialist, aims to reverse the sad figures by pursuing stronger measures and more ambitious targets in fighting cancer in Europe. The report which is based on the elimination of health inequalities and unequal access to health care is structured around four main areas:

  • Prevention is still the best cure. About 40 percent of cancers are avoidable. Legislative measures and recommendations to Member States should promote healthier lifestyles and reduce external health risks. The report also includes the objective for a ‘Tobacco Free Generation 2040’.
  • Screening and early detection will be optimized by a platform for exchange and collaboration between national structures.
  • Equal access to care will be based on quality criteria to ensure the best possible care, in particular for complex and rare cancers while access for all to available, affordable and innovative treatments will be guaranteed.
  • Support for patients and their carers during and after the disease. Recommendations to Member States will be made to improve quality of life. The report supports the deployment of the "right to be forgotten", so that patients are no longer penalised after their recovery.

MEP Véronique Trillet-Lenoir (Renaissance, FR) says : "To achieve these goals, our main lever of action is based on ambitious, multidisciplinary, independent, coordinated and adequately funded European research, relying heavily on data sharing and Artificial Intelligence. The articulation of prevention, care and research actions will be ensured by a European Knowledge Center constituting a virtual "European Cancer Institute". The commitment of Member States to quality practices could be formalised by the signing of a "European Cancer Patients' Charter". This plan will be financed to the extent of 4 billion euros through the EU4HEALTH program, but also to research credits from Horizon Europe and the cohesion funds.