There are 18.1 million new cancer cases and more than 9.6 million cancer deaths worldwide each year, and these numbers are increasing drastically. With 54% of the world’s population living in cities, we believe cities are uniquely positioned to drive sustainable innovation in the delivery of cancer care—and health services in general—to large populations.
Despite recent improvements in cancer care worldwide, access to surgery, radiotherapy, and essential oncology medicines remains an enormous challenge in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). These issues are compounded by a lack of human resources specialized in cancer care across all regions and income settings.
To address this global challenge, C/Can has developed a “City Engagement Process” that outlines support for participating cities over a two-year period, during which they identify, plan, and implement solutions to close major gaps in quality cancer care—from diagnosis to treatment to palliative and supportive care.
While cities take the lead in developing cancer treatment solutions, they work closely with C/Can’s multi-sector community of global and local partners, who provide technical assistance through each phase of the initiative. C/Can recognizes that each city is unique in its social, economic, and environmental development, which means there is no one-size-fits-all city cancer treatment solution.
By taking a health systems approach, cities can reduce inequities in access to quality cancer care and improve the health and wellbeing of their citizens.
Focus on Evidence-based Value
Data, and specifically the capacity for oncology data modeling, has become a crucial element in the allocation of resources in healthcare settings. This is particularly true in the NCD space, where multiple converging trends present complex challenges to healthcare leaders. The potential opportunities to support planning and improve access to cancer interventions at a systems level based on analyses of multiple complex datasets is largely unexplored.
The breadth and volume of data that C/Can is currently generating in cities is significant and will grow exponentially over the next 5 years as more cities join the Challenge. As of January 2019, more than 1,100 data points from needs assessments in 8 cities is being collected and stored on (REDCap), providing capacity for real-time data analysis and reporting.