2nd European Colorectal Cancer Days – one step closer to a successful CRC prevention

Improving the uptake of colorectal cancer screening as well as the success rate of colorectal cancer treatment were among the main topics of the 2nd European Colorectal Cancer Days - a conference which was held in Brno, Czech Republic, from 26th to 27th April 2013.

The conference was organized by Pavel Poc, Member of the European Parliament and the Institute of Biostatistics and Analyses at the Masaryk University, in partnership with the Statutory City of Brno, Association of European Cancer Leagues, United European Gastroenterology, and other expert medical societies and patient organizations. The event was held under the auspices of Tonio Borg, EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, Pavel Poc, Member of the European Parliament, Leoš Heger, Minister of Health of the Czech Republic, Jan Žaloudík, Member of the Senate of the Parliament of the Czech Republic, Jiří Běhounek, Vice-President of the Association of Regions of the Czech Republic, and Roman Onderka, Mayor of the City of Brno.

The ECCD conference provides a unique opportunity for meeting of physicians, policy makers, and patients to discuss the most effective ways of colorectal cancer (CRC) prevention on a Europe-wide scale. This year’s conference, attended by representatives of 15 countries, demonstrated vast differences in their individual approaches to CRC prevention programmes and their results all over Europe; many countries, including the most developed ones, have not implemented organized screening programmes yet. In this comparison, the Czech Republic can be considered as a relatively successful country; a functional organized screening programme has been available for several years now, and a project of personalized invitation is going to be launched by health insurance companies and the Czech Ministry of Health in autumn 2013. It is noteworthy that the personalized invitation is a result of, among others, long-term activities in the field of cancer prevention, in which IBA MU has been long involved together with expert medical societies, patient organizations and policy makers, and these efforts were brought to fruition by the first year of the ECCD conference in 2012.

One of the highlights of the conference programme was the United European Gastroenterology workshop, in which invited experts from European countries shared their experience with various aspects of CRC screening – from health issues to social and economic problems. The programme was accompanied by two specialized workshops focused on recent problems of CRC patients and on the communication and spreading information about CRC prevention, diagnosis and treatment.

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European Colorectal Cancer Days 2013: photogallery