The leaders met to discuss progress made in cancer prevention and control over the last seven years, and the challenges that remain to deliver the global target of a 25% reduction in premature mortality from non-communicable diseases by 2025.
Moderated by the award-winning journalist Mrs Baria Alamuddin, this year’s WCLS programme included keynote presentations from Christopher Wild, Director of the International Agency for Research and Cancer, and Philippe Douste-Blazy, Under-Secretary General of the UN and Special Advisor to the Secretary-General on Innovative Financing for Development, who reflected on the progress made in putting cancer on global and national health agendas. “We have made key strides in knowing what needs to happen but the challenge now is implementation” said Dr Wild.
In a powerful series of TED style talks, speakers shared inspirational and personal stories, highlighting the power of the patient voice in cancer advocacy in India and South Africa, and what can be achieved through multi-sectoral and cross-country collaboration in Mexico and Finland.
This was followed by two dynamic roundtable discussions in which Ministers of Health described challenges and levers for success in the implementation of cancer prevention and control policies.
In his closing remarks, CEO of UICC, Cary Adams, drew attention to today’s launch of the landmark World Cancer Declaration Progress Report."This is the first time UICC has reported collectively in this way and we have been both encouraged and inspired by the breadth of civil society efforts, contributing to national progress across cancer control spectrum. At the same time the report highlights a number of common challenges, particularly in developing countries where the burden is set to increase most rapidly.”
Cary Adams went on to say that, “It is critical to respond to this need by uniting as a cancer community to call for a comprehensive and robust World Health Assembly (WHA) cancer resolution in 2017 that would articulate a clear health systems response for cancer and reduce millions of cancer deaths worldwide.”
This call to action was endorsed by Etienne Krug, World Health Organization, who called on the WCLS participants to, “Support and engage governments from all regions and income settings to support this resolution at the World Health Assembly in May 2017”.
To learn more about the World Cancer Declaration Report and sign up to support UICC’s call to action for a cancer resolution in 2017, visit http://www.uicc.org/wcd-report