Thank you to everyone who attended our webinar. We had the great honour of launching the European Parliament Challenge Cancer Intergroup, chaired by MEP Cristian Bușoi, and co-chaired by MEPs Alessandra Moretti, Aldo Patriciello, Frederique Ries, with the European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC) providing the Secretariat. Read the report here.
This first and only EU Parliamentary Intergroup on cancer will serve as a forum for MEPs from all political parties 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. It will act as a two-way communication channel by holding hearings and debates and leading fact-finding missions on salient topics such as prevention, access to treatment, medicine shortages, cancer research on quality of life, innovation in cancer care, and survivorship.
The virtual launch event brought together MEPs and high-level speakers, including Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides and the Chair of the Cancer Mission Board, Prof. Walter Ricciardi, to discuss cancer challenges in times of pandemics like COVID-19 and the role of policy makers and stakeholders, including patient organisations such as ECPC.
Answers to questions posed during the event can be found here.
Programme and slides
|Welcome address / Opening session |
MEP Cristian Silviu Bușoi (Romania), Chair of the Challenge Cancer Intergroup
MEP Alessandra Moretti (Italy), Co-Chair of Challenge Cancer Intergroup
MEP Frédérique Ries (Belgium), Co-Chair of Challenge Cancer Intergroup
MEP Aldo Patriciello (Italy), Co-Chair of Challenge Cancer Intergroup
|Setting the scene|
Commissioner Stella Kyriakides,
European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety
|Cancer patients as a bridge between cancer research and care|
Kathi Apostolidis, President of the European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC)
Francesco de Lorenzo, former President of ECPC, Chair of the Scientific Committee of ECPC
|The Cancer Mission|
|Conquering Cancer: mission possible |
Prof. G. Walter Ricciardi, Chair of the Cancer Mission Board, Professor of Hygiene and Public Health at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Rome
|Towards a Mission on Cancer|
Prof. Dr. Anton Berns, President European Academy of Cancer Sciences, Emeritus Chairman Board of Directors, Netherlands Cancer Institute, Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital
|Cancer in the era of COVID-19|
|Can COVID-19 challenge cancer?|
Prof. Dr. Michael Baumann, Chairman and Scientific Director at the German Cancer
|Disease Burden, Costs and Access to Valuable Cancer Medicines:|
how the pandemic has influenced the disease burden Prof. Dr. Bengt Jönsson, Professor Emeritus of the Stockholm School of Economics
|The industry perspective on a strengthened approach to cancer care post-COVID-19|
|Nuclear Medicine – a driving Force in the fight against Cancer |
Dr. Antonis Kalemis, President of NMEU, Nuclear Medicine Europe
|Cancer as a policy priority |
Dr. Nathalie Moll, Director General, European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA)
Dr. Oxana Domenti, Head of WHO Regional Office Europe
MEP Cristian Silviu Bușoi, Chair of the Challenge Cancer Intergroup
First and only EU Parliamentary Intergroup on cancer
The new European Parliament Challenge Cancer Intergroup is the first and only EU Parliamentary Intergroup on cancer. It will be chaired by MEP Cristian Bușoi, and co-chaired by MEPs Alessandra Moretti, Aldo Patriciello and Frédérique Ries, with the European Cancer Patient Coalition (ECPC) providing its Secretariat.
This new Intergroup was conceived by ECPC to ensure continuity in the European Parliament’s work on cancer during the previous and the current mandates. The Intergroup will serve as a forum for MEPs from all political parties to engage in dialogue with patients, cancer survivors, 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. It will act as a two-way communication channel by holding hearings and debates and leading fact-finding missions on salient topics such as prevention, access to treatment, medicine shortages, cancer research on quality of life, innovation in cancer care, and survivorship.
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.
Chair and Co-chair of the Intergroup
Cristian Bușoi, Chair
Cristian-Silviu BUŞOI, Chair of the Industry, Research and Energy Committee (ITRE) of the European Parliament.
Mr. Buşoi graduated in medicine at the “Carol Davila” University in Bucharest, in law at the “Titu Maiorescu” University in Bucharest, and in diplomacy at the Romanian Diplomatic Institute in Bucharest.
His political career started in 1996 when, as a young student, he became a member of the National Liberal Party. Eight years later, he entered the Romanian Parliament as Member of the Committee for Health and Family and in 2013 became President of the Romanian National Health Insurance House. His dedication in the Romanian Parliament, convinced electors to vote him in 2007 as their representative in the European Parliament. Mr. Busoi is Member of the Delegation for relations with the countries of Southeast Asia and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. He is also substitute Member of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI), Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) and Delegation for relations with the Arab Peninsula (DARP).
Mr. Buşoi was a Member of the European Parliament from 2007 to 2013, a position he regained in 2014 becoming chair of the Industry, Research and Energy Committee.
Aldo Patriciello, Co-Chair
Aldo Patriciello (born 1957) is an Italian politician. He is a member of the European Parliament since May 8, 2006. Nowadays he represents “Forza Italia” within the EPP parliamentary group. He’s a titular member of the Member ITRE Committee (Industry, Research and Energy and a substitute on the ENVI Committee (Environment, Public Health and Food Safety).
This year he launched, with other MEPs, a written declaration on heart failure and the 1st Eu stroke summit in the European Parliament.
It has already been appointed as rapporteur or shadow rapporteur:
- OPINION on the proposal for a decision of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Decision No 466/2014/EU granting an EU guarantee to the European Investment Bank against losses under financing operations supporting investment projects outside the Union
- OPINION on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council setting a framework for energy efficiency labelling and repealing Directive 2010/30/EU
- OPINION on procedures and practices regarding Commissioner Hearings, lessons to be taken from the 2014 process
- OPINION on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down management, conservation and control measures applicable in the Convention Area of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) and amending Council Regulations (EC) No 1936/2001, (EC) No 1984/2003 and (EC) No 520/2007
- OPINION on an Aviation Strategy for Europe
- OPINION on sustainable urban mobility
- OPINION on the mandate for the trilogue on the 2016 draft budget
- OPINION on the proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the protection of undisclosed know-how and business information (trade secrets) against their unlawful acquisition, use and disclosure
- OPINION on “Towards a digital trade strategy “
- OPION on implementation report on Implementation of the European Disability Strategy
- REPORT on “Accelerating Clean Energy Innovation”
- REPORT on ‘A European strategy on Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems’
Since 2014 (the start of the new mandate), he’s an active member of:
– Sky and Space Intergroup
– Wine, spirits and quality foodstuffs Intergroup
– Mep heart group
– MEP against cancer group
Frederique Ries, Co-Chair
Frédérique Ries is a Belgian journalist and politician.
She was first elected to the European Parliament in 1999, where she currently sits on the committees on Environment and Health, Foreign Affairs, and Human Rights. She is also a Member of the Delegation for relations with Israel.
Before entering politics, she was a TV producer and editor at Belgium’s main private channel, RTL-TVI.
Vice-President (2013-2017) then President of St. Peter’s Hospital in Brussels (2017-2019), Frédérique has shown her commitment to improve the health of Europeans patients. She recently spearheaded initiatives in this regard on Lyme’s disease, Rare diseases and HIV.
Alessandra Moretti, Co-Chair
After a low degree and some years in the Regional Council and the Italian National Parliament, in 2019 Alessandra Moretti was elected member of the European Parliament.
There she is member of the ENVI Committee (Environment, public health and food safety), member of the TRAN Committee (Transport and Tourism) and member of the FEMM Committee (Women’s rights and gender equality).
She is convinced to fight against inequality and social fractures and to take action for the challenges of our time: climate change, gender equality and social justice.
Members of the Intergroup
Speakers at the Intergroup Launch Event
Stella Kyriakides worked as a clinical psychologist in the Mental Health Services of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Cyprus in the area of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry from 1979-2006. Special areas of interest and training were Pediatric oncology and Child sexual abuse. In 2006, she was elected to the Cyprus Parliament and was re-elected in 2011 and 2016 for the Democratic Rally party of which she was the Vice-President.
At the House of Representatives, she was the Chair of the Committee on Human Rights and Equal Opportunities for Men and Women, and the Vice Chair of the Committee on Health Affairs and a member of the Committee on Foreign and European Affairs. In 2012, she was appointed Head of the Cyprus Delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE). She served as Representative of the PACE at the Venice Commission, as Chair of the Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development, and as chair of the Sub-Committee on Children and as PACE General Rapporteur for the Child. In 2017 she was elected President of the PACE, thus becoming the 30th President of the Assembly. She founded the First Breast Cancer advocacy organisation in Cyprus, Europa Donna Cyprus, where she served as President from 2000-2015. She was also President of the European Breast Cancer Coalition Europa Donna. She has received many awards in recognition of her relentless efforts and work in support of women’s rights, children and patients’ rights and had numerous publications, research contributions/articles on children related matters and cancer in Cyprus and other European countries. On 1st December 2019 Ms. Kyriakides became the European Commissioner on Health and Food Safety.
Francesco de Lorenzo
Francesco de Lorenzo is cancer colon survivor with 22 years of experience in patient advocacy, capacity building, research, networking building, policy, partnership and project design and management. In ECPC since 2004 (co-Founder): from 2010 to 2013 as Vice President, from 2013 to 2019 as President, now as Past President and Chair of the Scientific Committee. His vision during the Presidency was to work towards Europe of Equality, where all European cancer patients have timely and affordable access to the best treatment and care available. He has been Member of the European Commission Expert Group on Cancer Control (2014/2018) and co-author of the European Cancer Patients’ Bill of Rights. In collaboration with MEPs, proposed amendments to the Work-Life Balance Directive, which have now been included in the Directive and include formal recognition of the role of the carer.
Involved in several European research projects and collaborating with the consortium Cancer Core Europe in the Board of Directors. Board member of the European Academy of Cancer Science (EACS) and of the Cancer Drug Development Forum (CDDF). Has been successfully working on the development of amendments to Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Regulation to harmonise HTA at the EU level, a policy recommendation first outlined in the ECPC position paper “Challenging the Europe of Disparities in Cancer” in 2015, highlighting that patients play a crucial role in advancing policies. Presently he is also President of the Italian Federation of Cancer Patients Organisation (FAVO – www.favo.it), President of the Italian Association for Cancer Patients (Aimac – www.aimac.it) and full Professor of Biochemistry at the University Federico II of Naples.
Kathi Apostolidis became ECPC President in June 2019, she has previously served from 2013 to 2019 as ECPC Vice President in close collaboration with the Past President, Prof. Francesco de Lorenzo in strategy, strategic alliances, relations with the European Commission and other EU and national high-level cancer stakeholders. Kathi represents ECPC at various bodies including EMA’s Patients and Consumers Working Group, the Steering Committee of the ENCePP/EMA; the Expert Group ECIBC/QASDG EU Initiative on Breast Cancer; the Steering Committee of HTAi’s Patients and Citizens Involvement Group; the European Commission Working Group on mHealth Assessment Guidelines and the ODN-Oncology Data Network – member of the Clinical and Analytical Steering Committee CASC. Kathi is a Public Affairs Consultant with broad and diversified experience in regulatory and public affairs, diplomacy, strategy, marketing and communications. Surviving breast cancer twice, she was involved in breast cancer, survivorship and cancer patient rights advocacy for many years on the national and international level.
Her advocacy covers issues of access to cancer care, informed shared decision making in cancer care, patient involvement in cancer research, health and cancer care policy and economics, cancer care delivery, patient safety, health technology assessment, and digital technology in cancer care. At the national level she is a founding member and President of the Hellenic Cancer Coalition-ELLOK (ellok.org) and a Director/Board Member of other Greek cancer patient associations. She represents patients at the Board of Directors of the recently legalized and under establishment National Cancer Institute and at the Patient Registries Committee of the Greek Ministry of Health
Prof. Michael Baumann
Prof. Michael Baumann is a radiation oncologist and radiation biologist. His scientific focus is on the development of individualized biological radiation oncology, high-precision/proton therapy and the treatment of lung, head and neck tumors. He completed his medical studies at the University of Hamburg early in 1988. Until the end of 1989 he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Massachussetts General Hospital of Harvard Medical School in Boston. After training as a radiation oncologist he come a Reader in radiation oncology (‘Habilitation’) in Hamburg in 1994. In 1995, he moved to the Medical Faculty Carl Gustav Carus in Dresden as Head of Experimental Radiation Oncology, in 2001 he was promoted to full professor. From 2003 Michael Baumann was the founding director of the University Cancer Center (UCC), Dresden. Since 2016, Michael Baumann is Chairman and Scientific Director of the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg, Chairman and Spokesperson of the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK). He is also Co-Chairman of the Strategy Group “National Decade Against Cancer” of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Reseach (BMBF) and Member of the Board of Trustees of the Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin. Michael Baumann has published more than 350 scientific articles in medical journals. He is the editor-in-chief of the leading international journal for radiation oncology, Radiotherapy and Oncology. In 2004, Michael Baumann was elected a member of the German National Academy of Science, Leopoldina, in 2009 member of the European Academy of Cancer Sciences. He has received numerous academic awards, including The Deutscher Krebspreis by the German Cancer Society (2018), the Janeway Medal of the American Radium Society (2018), and the Alfred-Breit-Award by the German Society of Radiation Oncology (2018).
Walter Ricciardi is Professor of Hygiene and Public Health at the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome. He is scientific Advisor to the Italian Minister of Health for the coronavirus pandemia. From January to December 2019 Head of Department of Woman and Child Health and Public Health of Fondazione Policlinico Universitario Agostino Gemelli IRCCS – Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome. On November 2019 he was appointed Coordinator of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Human Technopole Foundation. From 2019 he is President of the Mission Board for Cancer of the European Commission. In May 2018 he has been elected President of the World Federation of Public Health Associations (WFPHA) by the General Assembly of the WFPHA. In 2017 he was appointed Italian Representative in the Executive Board of the World Health Organisation. In 2016 he was appointed Principal Investigator of the EC Grant N° 733274 “TO REACH” the first health services and health systems research programme funded by the European Commission. In December 2015, he was appointed Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Health Policy, Governance and Leadership at the Institute of Public Health, Medical School, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore – Rome. From August 2015 to December 2018 he was the President of the Italian National Institute of Health. In May 2013 he was appointed Member of the Expert Panel on effective ways of investing in Health (European Commission, DG – SANTE) and in December 2016 he has been awarded a three-year second mandate. He is Editor of the European Journal of Public Health, of the Oxford Handbook of Public Health Practice and Founding Editor of the Italian Journal of Public Health and of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Public Health. In May 2019 he received the “Laurea Honoris Causa” at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, USA.
Anton Berns studied biochemistry at the University of Nijmegen and received his Masters degree in 1969 (cum laude) and his PhD in 1972 (supervisor Prof. H. Bloemendal) from that same University (cum laude). He did his postdoctoral training in the group of Rudolf Jaenisch at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, CA., where he studied the role of retroviruses in causing lymphomas in mice. In 1976 he returned to the University of Nijmegen where he became junior staff member. His group explored proviral insertional mutagenesis as a means to identify new oncogenes. In 1985 he was appointed as staff scientist at the Netherlands Cancer Institute and in 1986 he became head of the Division of Molecular Genetics of the Institute. Here his group did pioneering work to generate and utilize genetically modified mice as a tool to search for new cancer genes. His group focused on the development and use of advanced mouse models for cancer. Other themes of his research were: i. Development of tools to faster generate complex mouse models, ii. High throughput transposon insertional mutagenesis to identify components in signaling pathways relevant for cancer, and iii. The role of tumor heterogeneity and cells-of-origin of lung cancer and mesothelioma. In 1999, he was appointed as Director of Research and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Netherlands Cancer Institute/Antoni van Leeuwenhoek Hospital from which he retired at the end of 2011. The experimental work in his lab ended in May 2019. Some of the projects are being continued by postdocs and former colleagues. He remains active as advisor, reviewer, and as board member of supervisory committees and national and international organisations dedicated to cancer research.
Bengt Jönsson is Professor Emeritus of Health Economics at the Stockholm School of Economics (SSE), Sweden. Before joining the SSE in 1990 he was a professor at Linköping University, Department of Health and Society, 1982-1990. He was director of the Swedish Institute for Health Economics (IHE) in Lund from 1979 to 1982, and a member of the IHE Board until 2004.
He is now chair of IHE scientific advisory board. He is also a member of the European Academy of Cancer Sciences, and vice chair of the EU Expert Panel on effective ways of investing in health. He has been a member of the Karolinska University Hospital Board, and the Scientific Advisory Board, National Board of Health and Welfare, Sweden. He was also Chair of the Expert Group to the Committee on Funding and Organisation of Health Services and Medical Care in Sweden (HSU 2000), and a member of the National Social Insurance Board from 1992 to 1994, and of SBU (The Swedish Council on Technology Assessment in Health Care), Scientific Advisory Board 1988-2004. Professor Jönsson is a member of the editorial boards of several journals, including the Journal of Cancer Policy, European Journal of Health Economics, and International Journal of Technology Assessment in Health Care. He has also been a temporary adviser to the WHO and a consultant to OECD and UNIDO. Professor Jönsson’s extensive publications in the field of health economics include over 200 papers, reports, and book chapters. Presently he is president of the SHEA, the Swedish Health Economics Association and past president of iHEA, the international Health Economists Association.
Dr. Antonis Kalemis
Dr. Antonis Kalemis is President of Nuclear Medicine Europe. He studied biomedical instrumentation engineering, medical physics and business management, in Greece and the United Kingdom. After his PhD, he held positions in research, marketing and business management at major medical imaging manufacturers. Over the years, he worked in radiopharmaceutical clinical trials, medical image analysis, nuclear medicine and radiological technology. Since 2016, he is at Siemens Healthcare GmbH, managing the molecular imaging product line for North Europe.
In parallel, he is intimately involved with the Nuclear Medicine Europe, the industry association, where he held various positions. Since 2019 he is the President of the association. In the past, he acted as an external reviewer for several national and international research grant organisations, such as the EU Commission for the Horizon2020 programme, the Hong Kong Research Grants Council and the Agence Nationale de la Recherche in France. He is a member of the editorial board of the EJNMMI Physics and reviewer on several international scientific journals.
Nathalie Moll joined the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) as Director General in April 2017. EFPIA represents the pharmaceutical industry operating in Europe. Together with its direct membership 40 leading pharmaceutical companies, 33 national associations representing over 1,900 companies and in collaboration with health and research players, EFPIA’s mission is to create an environment that enables our members to innovate, discover, develop and deliver new therapies and vaccines for people across Europe, as well as contribute to the European economy. Prior to joining EFPIA, between 2010 and 2017 Nathalie was the Secretary General of EuropaBio ranked as the most effective European Trade Association in Brussels in 2013. She spent over 20 years working for the biotech industry at EU and national level in associations and corporate positions and held the position of Chair and Vice Chair of the International Council of Biotech Associations (ICBA). In 2013, Nathalie won the Technovisionaries Women Innovation Award organised by Women & Technologies® while in 2009, Nathalie and the Green Biotech Team of EuropaBio were presented with the Leadership and Excellence in Advancing Ag-Biotech and Food Issues Award. Nathalie was also named one of the 15 leading women in biotech in Europe in 2017. Nathalie holds an Honours Degree in Biochemistry and Biotechnology from St Andrews University, Scotland.
Dr. Oxana Domenti, prior to being appointed as WHO Representative to the European Union, Dr. Oxana Domenti served as Senior Advisor to the WHO Regional Director for Europe on multilateral affairs. Before joining WHO, Dr. Domenti was Ambassador of the Republic of Moldova to Switzerland, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Moldova to the United Nations Office at Geneva (2018-2020) and the World Trade Organization, and other international organizations based in Geneva. Dr. Domenti was a member of parliament in the Republic of Moldova (2009-2017) and served as President of the Parliamentary Health and Social Security Committee. As a parliamentarian, she also chaired the European and Central Asian Branch of the Global Parliamentary TB Caucus. Prior to being elected to parliament, she served as adviser to the President on social development issues (2003-2009) when she was also a member of the Governing Board of the National Health Insurance Company and of the National Social Security Agency. Throughout her career, she has contributed to the development of social and health policies at national and regional levels, particularly in the area of health financing, tobacco control, TB, primary health care, and access to medicines. She holds degrees of PhD and MSc and received her academic training in Economics at the Academy of Economic Studies of Moldova, on European Social Security at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, as well as in Public Health at the University of London.
- Launching event – Report - (PDF)
- ECPC White Paper – Europe of Disparities (EN) - (PDF)
- ECPC and EAPM Statement on HTA On Future Cooperation on Health Technology Assessment - (PDF)
- HTA and Patient Involvement - (PDF)
- ECPC Position on access to medicines report - (PDF)
- Shortage of inexpensive essential medicines: Call to Action - (PDF)
- Joint Action on Rare Cancers launch - (PDF)
- European Guide on Quality Improvement in Comprehensive Cancer Control - (PDF)