World Cancer Congress Report 1, August 27, 2012

Three Canadian Cancer Survivor Network Board members are attending the UICC World Cancer Congress in Montreal, August 27-30: CCSN President and CEO Jackie Manthorne, CCSN Board Secretary Mona Forrest, and CCSN Director Albert Klein.

Manthorne will be presenting on Wednesday afternoon; the title of her presentation is Involvement of patients and survivors in advocacy and public policy development at the Canadian Cancer Survivor Network.

The theme for the Congress is Connecting for Global Impact – and highlights the need for continued support and momentum in translating the benefits of knowledge gained through research and practice to those living with and affected by cancer.

This morning we explored the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada’s giant colon! the picture below shows Mona Forrest at the entrance to the colon.

There are four tracks participants can follow:

Track 1: Prevention and early detection (including tobacco control): The standard definition of primary and secondary prevention sets the scope for this track, methods targetting behavioural risk factors as well as underlying factors such as social and economic disadvantage will be explored in these sessions. Tobacco control is a vital and specialized aspect of cancer control, and is an established field with knowledge and experience that can be transferred to other risk factors. Including tobacco control in a broader sense will facilitate an important exchange between participants with the goal of improving prevention outcomes for all risk factors.

Track 2: Cancer care and survivorship: This track includes proven medical treatment of the disease in the context of a desire to provide active treatment and comprehensive care for those affected by cancer, including measures to improve side-effects of treatment, psychosocial assessment and support and rehabilitation. This track will explore in depth what “survivorship” means to people affected by cancer, what they want and need, how the health system can meet those needs, and what survivors themselves can contribute.

Track 3: Palliation and pain control: As over one third of patients die within five years of a diagnosis (even in the most advanced health systems), dying, and humane methods to ease the psychological and physical burden of impending death will be explored, as will the challenges (and benefits) of an early introduction of palliative care into the patient’s journey. In terms of equity, giving palliation and pain control importance helps address the inequity arising in resource-constrained countries where end of life interventions are often all that can be offered.

Track 4: Systems in cancer control: Emphasizing systems solutions builds upon the theme of the 2010 Congress – “Systems to make it happen” – and is a priority for those who wish to make an impact at the community level to improve the access to care. A broad definition of the term “system” will be used to allow for the discussion of issues, and solutions for improving national, regional and local health systems. Surveillance systems, including cancer registries, and population risk factor monitoring will be a key focus, as will how to advocate for the cancer cause, creating an infrastructure around fundraising and the distribution of resources.

More info: http://www.worldcancercongress.org

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