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Wednesday, 1 July 2020
Today marks the launch of the first and only EU Parliamentary Intergroup dealing exclusively with cancer: the Challenge Cancer Intergroup. This informal group of cross-party Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) is chaired by MEP Cristian Bușoi (EPP) and co-chaired by MEPs Alessandra Moretti (S&D), Aldo Patriciello (EPP), Frédérique Ries (Renew), with the European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC) providing the Secretariat.
The virtual launch event brings together MEPs and a range of high-level speakers, including Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides and the Chair of the Cancer Mission Board, Prof. Walter Ricciardi, to discuss the importance of the ‘Mission’ concept in the field of cancer in times of pandemics like COVID-19 and the role of policymakers and stakeholders, including patient organisations such as ECPC.
“Beating cancer can’t be done by a single actor, it is an opportunity for stakeholders at all levels and across a range of experiences and backgrounds to collaborate for the benefit of all Europeans. The parliamentary intergroup on cancer will help us to bridge the gap between European institutions, national governments and stakeholders as well as European citizens to address the growing cancer burden in EU,” said Romanian MEP Cristian-Silvu Busoi (EPP), Chair of the Challenge Cancer Intergroup.
“At ECPC, the largest European umbrella association of cancer patients, we are honoured to provide the Secretariat to this important new Intergroup on cancer. The birth of the “Challenge Cancer” Intergroup shows that cancer has truly become a priority in Europe. We will work with the members of the Intergroup to ensure that patients will be at the core of Europe’s cancer strategy,” said ECPC President Kathi Apostolidis.
Despite efforts to address this issue in recent years, cancer remains one of the leading medical and societal challenges of our time. This is why the Commission has selected cancer as one of its five new Research and Innovation Missions of the EU. The goal of the Cancer Mission is to achieve 75% survival rate by 2030, from 47% today, by focusing on cancer prevention, treatment, survivorship care, social innovation and ensuring the reduction of existing inequalities in all abovementioned areas. Working hand in hand with the European Commission’s new policies as the Cancer Mission and Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan, which is expected to be published by the end of 2020, it will focus on prevention, diagnosis, treatment, survivorship and quality of life of patients and survivors.
With the launch of the Challenge Cancer Intergroup, MEPs show their strong support and political will to take action on cancer to the next level. Intergroup members will be able to dedicate themselves more fully to the fight against cancer and to engage in dialogue with patients, cancer survivors and carers, scientific and medical societies, research institutions, think tanks, medical practitioners and researchers, policy makers and leaders of the health industry, civil society at large, national governments and institutions.
This new Intergroup was conceived by ECPC as a result of its ongoing commitment and involvement in supporting the “Mission” concept in Research and Innovation, adopted by the European Commission, together with prominent scientists, physicians and researchers, members of the European Academy of Cancer Sciences (EACS). ECPC, with its 450-member cancer patient organisations across the EU, will act as the intermediary between the EU Parliamentary Intergroup on Cancer and civil society at large. In its capacity as the Secretariat of the intergroup, ECPC will provide the members with access to real patient experience and a variety of European and national cancer stakeholders, while allowing citizens to express their needs directly to European policymakers. ECPC has the ability, across its pan-European network of organisations, to share knowledge, to influence public health and cancer policies.
About the European Cancer Patient Coalition and Parliamentary Intergroups
The European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC) is the voice of cancer patients in Europe. With over 450 members, ECPC is Europe’s largest umbrella cancer patients’ association, covering all 28 EU member states and many other European and non-European countries. ECPC represents patients aﬀected by all types of cancers, from the rarest to the most common.
A Parliamentary Intergroup is an informal group of cross-party MEPs who wish to highlight and promote shared ideas. It serves as a forum, usually in close cooperation with external stakeholders, where expertise can be shared, and legislative work can be advanced on certain topics.
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