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ESMO for World Cancer Day 2020

On the occasion of World Cancer Day ESMO joins UICC in its call to reduce the global cancer burden and commits to take progresses achieved so far one step further.

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“Our commitment to act will lead to powerful progress in reducing the global impact of cancer” (UICC, 2020). 

UICC, 2020

On the occasion of the 20th anniversary of World Cancer Day, ESMO answers to UICC’s invitation to mobilise the cancer community and invites all ESMO members and the society at large to reflect about the progresses achieved so far in the fight against cancer and those that still need to be accomplished.   

Progress is possible… 

Cancer care has changed enormously in recent years. As the knowledge of the disease increases and the methods of treatment advance, ESMO aims to secure the best possible outcomes for cancer patients. It provides the necessary ground for progress to happen and strives for this progress to reach as many people as possible. It does so by standing by the side of oncologists and supporting them in their daily practice, and by advocating for sustainable and accessible cancer care. 

ESMO’s continued work of building and nurturing the oncology community translates in small steps ahead that all together contribute to big advancements in the fight against cancer. 

Here a numerical portrait of the work that has been done in 2019 by ESMO.

…But is not inevitable. What is the bravest thing we can do about cancer? 

While revolutionary advances have been achieved in cancer care, a lot still needs to be done in the fight for a world free from cancer. What is the bravest thing we can do about it?

ESMO leaders express their opinion on the priorities that need to be addressed in the fight against cancer. 

Watch the full playlist

A story of progress: ESMO tools in practice

Breast and cervical cancer coverage from 60% to 90%, and cancer treatment coverage for the population up to 88.65%.  

These are among the tangible results of the joint Kazakhstan-WHO-ESMO project, that consisted in the review of Kazakhstan’s cancer services to identify sustainable solutions for the country to continue offering access to the best possible quality of cancer care to patients.  

Invited by the WHO, in 2016 ESMO assisted in the evaluation of Kazakhstan’s cancer treatment protocols and medicines. ESMO’s tools such as the ESMO Clinical Practice Guidelines and the ESMO Magnitude of Clinical Benefit Scale (ESMO-MCBS) have been used in the review, which has led to the improvement of cancer care services in the Asian country.  

The project outcomes - a set of recommendations on how to improve and implement cancer screening programmes, clinical protocols and on how to provide educational opportunities for oncologists - helped to optimise the allocation of resources, with an overall increase of the country’s cancer budget. This ensures that essential and effective cancer treatments are offered free of charge to cancer patients. 

“I am very proud that I can now tell my patients that they can have access to many options of care and I can do much more for them” says Dr Dilyara Kaidarova, Director of the Kazakh Research Institute of Oncology & Radiology, who has been leading the project for Kazakhstan.


Every person matters. Every action counts.  

An event dedicated to cancer prevention will be organised on World Cancer Day to promote a healthy lifestyle among ESMO Staff Members. 

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