Patient empowerment puts patients at the heart of health services so that they are able to derive the maximum benefits from it. A range of tools are available to help cancer patients and citizens empower themselves with knowledge and a stronger sense of what their rights are with respect to cancer care.
The European Code Against Cancer (ECAC) is an initiative of the European Commission, developed by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). The ECAC aims to inform people about actions they can take for themselves or their families to reduce their risk of cancer. Leading cancer scientists from across Europe compiled the ECAC based on the latest scientific evidence on cancer prevention, coming up with twelve recommendations that most people can follow without any special skills or advice. It has been estimated that almost half of all deaths due to cancer in Europe could be avoided if everyone followed the recommendations.
The European Code Against Cancer is promoted by the Association of European Cancer Leagues (ECL). ECL offers a unique platform for cancer leagues in Europe to exchange best practices, and benchmark cancer prevention strategies implementing the ECAC, by convening technical workshops, and organising study exchange visits for cancer leagues to learn first-hand from their peers.
More information about the European Code Against Cancer is available here.
The European Code of Cancer Practice (The Code), translated in over 20 languages, is a citizen and patient-centred manifesto of the core requirements for good clinical cancer practice, in order to improve outcomes for all of Europe’s cancer patients. It has been co-produced by a team of cancer patients, patient advocates and cancer professionals.
The Code focusses on informing and assisting cancer patients at all stages of their cancer journey. It sets out a series of ten key overarching rights, and in particular signposts what patients should expect from their health system, in order for them to achieve the best possible outcomes. It is an empowerment tool to ensure the best available care is delivered for European citizens and patients.
More information is available here.