Will Fight Cancer?
invitation from the Cancer Advocacy
Coalition of Canada (CACC) to all Federal Party Leaders:
can you pass the cancer test?”
Last year, 129,000 Canadians were diagnosed
with cancer. More than 63,000 died of the disease. Today, one
in three Canadians will be diagnosed. In ten years, we will
have twice as many cancer patients as we have today. It’s time
to push this terrible reality to the top of the politicians’
agenda. That’s why the Cancer Advocacy Coalition of Canada is
urging federal party leaders in this election to take our test.
We will publicly report the leaders’ answers on November 25,
to ensure you can cast an informed vote on who can best confront
Canada’s Number One health problem.
elected, how would your government eliminate delays in cancer
treatment, enforce clear national standards for care, enhance
participation in experimental treatment studies and stop sending
Canadians out of the country?
Cancer Care. Patchwork provincial efforts to deal with waiting
times for radiation therapy and surgery and the scarcity of
cancer specialists have failed Canadians. In some parts of Canada,
less than one half of patients receive treatment within the
recommended guidelines, and in the last 18 months, more than
2,700 patients were sent out of the country for care. Worse
still, fewer than 10 per cent of adults with cancer participate
in clinical studies that can significantly improve their chances
of surviving. Ottawa must assume a strong central role to ensure
all Canadians have timely, consistent access to diagnosis, care
and treatment, including experimental treatment studies.
How would your government ensure that
the 180-day approval time is met, and work to eliminate existing
delays in timely access to new drugs and new drug studies at
the national and provincial levels?
Issue: Drug Approval Times. New advances in chemotherapy
reduce suffering and death from cancer. Canada has a Priority
Drug Approval Process of 180 days to ensure new cancer treatments
are not delayed. Yet the average approval time is more than
500 days -- three times longer than in Europe or the U.S. Result:
Affluent Canadians are leaving the country because they can't
afford to wait for cancer care!
elected, how would your government ensure cancer survivors gain
a direct role in policy decisions, while making cancer care
accountable to the people it serves?The
Issue: Patient Power. Cancer care and treatment must be centred
on individual patient needs. People with cancer have the greatest
stake in the fight against cancer – but the smallest voice.
Citizens must have a stronger role in public policy decision-making
about the disease.
elected, would your government commit to a $3 billion increase
in research funding?
The Issue: Research. Canada spends $5 (CDN) per citizen
on cancer research, compared with $8 (US) in the United States.
Ottawa must increase this investment by $3 billion over four
years—or Canada will drop even further behind in the world-wide
fight against this disease.