- Lung cancer poses distinct policy challenges, including its association with late diagnosis and poorer prognosis. Dedicated and targeted policy approaches are required to meet these specific challenges.
- One core approach to improving lung cancer care and treatment is to better ensure people impacted by lung cancer gain access to the full multidisciplinary cancer care team. The newly published Essential Requirements for Quality Cancer Care: Lung Cancer sets out a fresh and powerful multi-stakeholder consensus about what the lung cancer care pathway consists of. The destination is clear and it must now be achieved.
- Progress in lung cancer screening, molecular diagnosis and tumour profiling provide opportunities for improving lung cancer outcomes, alongside surgery, immunotherapy, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. But barriers to patients accessing these technologies remain. Overcoming these barriers to implementation will require increased understanding about the new opportunities for implementation. It will also require questions that decision makers may still have about their impacton improving outcomes, and cost–benefit, to be comprehensively answered. Emphasis should also be given to developing the skills and experience within the workforce to facilitate adoption of newer technological methods, with the appropriate use of genomic profiling highlighted as a particular example.
- Countries across Europe are also recommended to implement cancer care, including for lung cancer, that utilises quality indicators as tools for continuous improvement. As was emphasised by patient representatives at the meeting “Information is ammunition for driving and influencing policy changes, as well as driving the optimisation of the care pathway”.
- At an EU level, politicians recommended an overarching European goal be established to, for example, double survival for poor prognosis tumours such as lung cancer by 2025, to drive change and create political momentum. This should be supported by a European dashboard that regularly and publicly measures progress and success in the EU’s fight against cancer.
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