Letter to European politicians urges them to set clear targets on prostate cancer

21 July 2021 Mrs. Sarah Collen, EAU Policy Coordinator

© European Union, [2021] – Source: European Parliament

On Thursday 15 July, Véronique Trillet-Lenoir (FR), lead rapporteur for the European Parliament’s Beating Cancer Committee, presented her draft report on the European Commission’s Beating Cancer Plan to the other members of the Committee. The European Association of Urology (EAU) has used this momentum to continue the conversations with European politicians and urged them to call for targets for prostate cancer early detection strategies to be in place across Europe by 2027.

Together with Europa Uomo, the European Cancer Patient Coalition, and the European Randomised Study on Prostate Cancer Screening project team, the EAU has compiled three targets for the European Commission to make sure that the early detection programmes become effective in time:

  1. Publish new guidelines on risk-stratified prostate cancer screening by 2024.
  2. By 2026, at least five EU member states should have incorporated these guidelines into their national cancer plans.
  3. By 2027, all EU member states should have in place a clear strategy for risk-stratified early detection in all men turning 50 years old.

After having provided evidence to the European Parliament’s Special Committee on Beating Cancer (BECA), the four organisations have now presented the new targets in a letter to MEPs. “We urge MEPs to make further recommendations that will ensure that all initiatives of Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan align and work towards the achievement of clear and tangible goals,” said the signatories.

The organisations have pressed hard for early detection programmes, and early this year the European Commission announced it would investigate this further as part of work on Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan. In fact, the European Commission has already started a process to update the 2003 EU Council Recommendations on Cancer Screening with its Group of Chief Scientific Advisors.

“In order to overcome the increasing trend of rising mortality rates from prostate cancer, we suggest that the targets be implemented in the context of Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan.”

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