New Board of the European Cancer Patient Coalition elected to serve a three-year term


On Sunday 5th June, the General Assembly of the European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC) elected its new Board of Directors and Audit Committee for the period 2016 – 2019.

Prof Francesco De Lorenzo (FAVO and AIMaC, Italy) was reconfirmed as President of ECPC, after obtaining the largest number of preferences among the 16 candidates. Prof De Lorenzo, a professor of Biology at the University of Naples and formed Minister of Health in Italy, guided ECPC for the period 2013-2016, consolidating the leadership of ECPC as one of Europe’s principal voices of cancer patients.

Kathi Apostolidis (K.E.F.I, Greece) and Jana Pelouchova (Diagnoza CL, Czech Republic), who both served in the previous Board, were also reconfirmed as Vice President and Secretary respectively.

Ms Apostolidis also recently elected President of the Executive Committee of the Hellenic Cancer Federation, in the process of legal registration, represents ECPC within the EMA Patients’ and Consumers’ Working Party, the ESMO Patients Advisory Group and has a key role in several of ECPC’s research projects and EU Commission cancer initiatives (ECIBC, Joint Action CanCon, Expert Group on Cancer Control, WG on assessment of mhealth guidelines).

Ms Pelouchova is a rare cancer patient, chair of the Czech Society Diagnoza Leukemie. She is also the President of the Leukemia Patient Advocates Foundation and steering committee member of CML and CLL Global Advocates Networks. Jana guides ECPC’s work on rare cancers and represents ECPC within the ECCO Patient Advisory Committee and Rare Cancers Europe Platform.

Andrew Winterbottom (Fight Bladder Cancer, UK) was elected Treasurer, after obtaining the third largest number of preferences. Fight Bladder Cancer is among the most active and largest associations supporting the needs of bladder cancer patients, and demonstrated a great capacity to support patients locally, while also having an impact on research priorities and EU policies on cancer. Winterbottom takes up the role formerly held by the current Minister of Health of Romania, Vlad Voiculescu.

Szymon Chrostowski (Cancer Patient Coalition, Poland), Dan Cimpoeru (FABC, Romania) and Natacha Bolanos (GEPAC, Spain) complete the new Board. Chrostowski is the leader of Poland’s largest cancer patients’ association and a key European opinion maker in relation to patients’ access to innovative cancer treatments. Dan Cimpoeru, a registered lawyer in Romania, has been a protagonist in the law suit brought forward by a group of cancer patients versus the Romanian government, which was found responsible for not providing access and reimbursement to innovative cancer treatments. This ground-breaking victory led to the update of the list of reimbursed cancer drugs in Romania. Ms Natacha Bolanos, an expert in cancer patients’ rehabilitation, has demonstrated her commitment and capacity working for Spain’s largest cancer patients’ association, and covering several international positions in patients’ advisory groups.

The ECPC Audit Committee oversees the financial management of ECPC, approving ECPC Budgets.

Pietro Presti (Fondazione Edo and Elvo Tempia, Italy) was re-elected and nominated Chair of the Audit Committee. Mr Presti is Managing Director of the Foundation Tempia and a Member of the UICC. Mr. Presti is also co-author for ECPC of the BenchCan guidelines, to be soon published by the Organisation of European Cancer Institutes.

Istvan Balogh (Children Cancer Foundation, Hungary) was also confirmed as Member of the Audit Committee. The new Committee is completed by Nicolas Philippou (PASYKAF, Cyprus), General Manager of the Cyprus Association of Cancer Patients and Friends. Mr Philippou has a vast understanding of cancer care (Member of UICC and ECL) and in financing, from his previous professional experience.

According to the ECPC Statute, each Full Member of the association can express up to 7 preferences to renew the 7 Board of Directors’ position, and 3 preferences for the Members of the Audit Committee. The voting process was organised by the ECPC Secretariat, and overviewed by the independent notary studio Actalys to ensure compliance with the Belgian law and the ECPC Statute.

For more information on the ECPC Elections 2016 click here.