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Europe against Cancer: Council Guidelines

In a Resolution of 13 December 1993, the Council of the European Union has issued guidelines for the "Europe against Cancer" programme following the evaluation of its actions over the period 1987-1992. The guidelines give priority to improving citizens' awareness of cancer pr...

In a Resolution of 13 December 1993, the Council of the European Union has issued guidelines for the "Europe against Cancer" programme following the evaluation of its actions over the period 1987-1992. The guidelines give priority to improving citizens' awareness of cancer prevention and encouraging healthier life-styles for the citizens of Europe. This is to be achieved by the dissemination of information, the coordination of cancer prevention activities between the Member States and by information campaigns targeted at specific groups. The Council recommends greater efforts to implement basic health education programmes which highlight the dangers of smoking and the benefits of healthy nutrition. It also recommends continuing training for teachers and others with responsibility for health education. The importance of developing and implementing efficient screening methods throughout the Member States is recognized. The Council wishes to see guidelines drawn up for early diagnosis of and screening for cancer, an improvement in the quality of screening through continuing training and continued monitoring of the effectiveness and accuracy of cancer screening. The Council stresses the need for continuing EU action in the areas of research, epidemiological studies, care and training. It foresees improvements in making the EU initiatives in this areas more transparent to the Member States, to reinforce basic research and work linking biomedical research to clinical research. It would also like to see increased cooperation between Member Sates through greater use of European research networks and by the exchange of young researchers as well as the strengthening of cooperation with international organizations involved in cancer research. In addition, the Council specifies the priorities regarding cancer registers and epidemiological studies, care and training. Regarding cancer registers and epidemiological studies, the objective is to facilitate the collection (in particular in cooperation with the World Health Organization) of reliable and comparable data on the incidence of cancer in order to monitor the problem, identify trends and carry out epidemiological studies at a European level. To bring about improvement in care, there is scope to promote cooperation between Member States in the areas of quality control regarding care, palliative care and responsibility for patient welfare. The Council also recommends improved cancer-related training for health-care workers.