Europacolon has called on all governments to implement existing EU recommendations on colorectal cancer screening following a new report published on 25th June 2008 that shows the disease to be significantly neglected despite being the second most common cancer in Europe.
Welcoming the findings of the report by the London School of Economics, Jola Gore-Booth, Director of europacolon said: “For too long colorectal cancer has been the poor relation in cancer screening and management. It causes over 50% more deaths each year than breast cancer, yet in many countries, breast cancer screening has been widely available for more than two decades whereas few formal screening programmes exist for colorectal cancer.”
She continued: “EU Health Ministers made recommendations to all member states in 2003 in regard to cancer screening programmes and these were reiterated in the Declaration of Brussels in 2007, but today’s findings show these are not being implemented quickly enough. In the meantime, nearly a quarter of a million people are dying each year from this debilitating disease which can be prevented if diagnosed and treated at an early stage.”
Dr Keith Spencer, Director of europacolon added: “The report reveals the continuing deficiencies in approach, both at European and national level, to the current management and treatment of colorectal cancer. This is a growing problem given the increasingly ageing population. It is estimated that the incidence of colorectal cancer will increase by more than 22% by 2015 if action is not taken.”