Last November 30th the Netherlands Comprehensive Cancer Organisation hosted the online symposium of the Netherlands Cancer Registry. The symposium focused on how to improve cancer care and prevention with insights from cancer registries. Cancer registries are the fuel for Europe’s Beating Cancer plan. The registries provide insights to improve oncological care and prevention. The Netherlands Cancer Registry (NCR) is the national registration since 1989, maintained by the Netherlands Comprehensive Cancer Organisation (IKNL). The main goal is to reduce the impact of cancer, from the personal to the societal level. Together with care professionals, researchers, patients, and policy makers IKNL translates data into valuable insights. What lies ahead in the upcoming years and how can the cancer registries help to guide the way? The recording of the symposium can be found below.
Watch the recorded symposium at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LVcPqBoEp3M
Chair dr. Liesbet van Eycken, director of the Belgian Cancer Registry took us on a global journey, starting with an interview with 'the first voice'; patient advocate Robert Greene. Better collaboration between organisations and outcomes need to be validated, truly reflecting what the patient is experiencing.
Prof. dr. Elisabete Weiderpass, director of the International Agency on Research of Cancer (IARC) presented from Lyon the international numbers on cancer incidence. Cancer is on the rise globally, in the EU and in the Netherlands. 'The good news? A lot of cancer types are preventable. They come from smoking, alcohol use, unhealthy diets, excess weight and viruses. The value for data is to guide action! Without cancer registry data you are basically flying blind, because you don’t know what should be the priorities. However, there is an overflow of information and what we have observed is that science is not always easy to communicate. Communication is a challenge for cancer registries in Europe and can help to increase the impact of cancer registry data.'
Prof. dr. Valery Lemmens, member of the board of IKNL, presented the trends in cancer in the Netherlands. There will be a large increase in cancer incidence rates due to demographics, with an increased proportion of elderly patients, causing an increased burden of care while the Netherlands will be dealing with a decrease in the working age population. The number of cancer diagnoses each year increases to 170.000 per year in 2030. The total number of cancer incidence in the Netherlands is relatively high, especially in females. For females we are the third in rank of European countries. Also in mortality numbers the Netherlands compares poorly to the European average. Survival figures have improved and the cancer registry enables to monitor this improvement. Finally, prof. Lemmens showed a preview of the Dutch Cancer Atlas which will be published medio 2022, showing regional incidence of cancer.
Siri Laronningen, head of the NORDCAN secretariat, informed us about the progress of the cancer registries in the Nordic countries, who collaborate within NORDCAN. What lessons to learn and opportunities to take from their cooperation? Laronningen showed the online NORDCAN platform at which data of all seven Nordic countries can be compared. Including trends for the incidence, prevalence, survival and mortality in the upcoming years. An important tool to monitor the impact of cancer in the Nordic countries, with timely information as addition to the European Cancer Information System (ECIS).