Creating alliances to improve cancer care

Cancer: Strategies for Quality Care conference

Within the framework of national and international events related to combatting cancer in Mexico, the National Cancer Institute (INCan), in collaboration with the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) and City Cancer Challenge (C/Can) announced at the Cancer: Strategies for Quality Care conference several key activities based on international and innovative models to facilitate the exchange and application of strategies to improve cancer care.

Key actors attend Models of Cancer Financing Forum organized by INCan

According to data from the World Health Organization (WHO), one in every six deaths in the world is attributable to cancer; in Mexico, this disease is the third cause of death; in 2018 it is estimated that 190,667 new cases were detected, causing 83,476 deaths in the country (Globocan 2018).

Mexico is the location for collaborative activities for quality care and where the National Cancer Institute, as the highest authority on cancer in our country, is hosting the Models of Cancer Financing Forum. Together with the UICC, it is organizing the Leadership in Action Meeting for Mexico and Latin America, while with C/Can, it is working with the Government of Guanajuato and León City Hall to integrate the latter as City Cancer Challenge’s sentinel city.

The Models of Cancer Financing Forum will analyze current solutions to take advantage of new sources of income that reduce funding gaps for the payment of treatment, equitable and universal access, as well as providing coverage of cancer services; the event will be a meeting point for medical specialists, cancer center executives, academics, legislators, private sector representatives and civil society organizations.

“It’s important to continue implementing strategies to guarantee quality care within the Mexican health system, which is why we believe it is valuable to explore other financing models with the participation of experts and institutions to promote the discussion regarding the best financing strategies,” noted Dr. Laura Suchil, Head of INCan’s Institutional Liaison Department. She added: “We are interested in learning from international experiences about medical, technical and economic aspects that have been favorable to reversing the number of premature cancer deaths.”

In their capacity as the organizers of the meeting and to facilitate the exchange of ideas between organizations and to strengthen their ability to fight against cancer, INCan and the UICC are inviting CEOs and leaders of UICC member organizations in Latin America to the Leadership In Action meeting hosted by INCan in Mexico, providing in the process continuity to the momentum and dynamism created in the country at the 2017 World Cancer Leaders’ Summit, which the National Cancer Institute also hosted. With these alliances and this event, INCan further consolidates its position as the main leader in the fight against cancer, a worthy Mexican representative; not only nationally but also throughout the region.

“At UICC we believe that progress in the fight against cancer involves collaboration and the exchange of experiences between organizations. We are happy to be able to provide UICC members with a meeting place for their leaders to return home with new ideas and solutions to increase the impact of their work in their countries. All this in a region especially committed to the fight against cancer, such as Latin America, where INCan has established itself as an inspiration and example,” said Laura Fernández-Díaz, Head of Membership and Partnerships at UICC.

An innovative model in combatting cancer, City Cancer Challenge Initiative (C/Can) is changing the way key stakeholders in the public and private sector are working together to achieve the common goal of improving equitable access to quality cancer care. C/Can’s long-term strategic objective is to contribute to the reduction of premature cancer deaths through, among other actions, improving health infrastructure, cancer services and the availability of a skilled workforce.

The city of León joins the City Cancer Challenge initiative

“Collaboration between the public and private sectors and civil society is essential to create effective solutions and change the landscape of cancer in Mexico and around the world. C/Can offers an innovative approach that brings together different actors to develop sustainable solutions in cities, which can then serve as models at national, regional and even global levels,” said Isabel Mestres, Director of Public Affairs at C/Can. “Cancer represents a significant burden in Mexico, and we are proud to have the support of León, by joining this challenge, to continue working towards quality and equitable cancer care for all.”

In conclusion, Dr. Laura Suchil, Head of INCan’s Institutional Liaison Department, said: “Achieving quality cancer care means improving collaboration between key actors; strengthening international alliances with organizations such as UICC and C/Can; learning and sharing our experiences with our counterparts in Latin America; and at the local level, seeking cooperation between the public, private and civil society sectors. Today, building models for cancer quality care in Mexico requires collaboration.”

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