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Global health community urged to take action on rising cancer cost

Leading cancer specialists from around the globe gathered at the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH), a global initiative of for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), to debate the increasing burden of worldwide spending on cancer treatment and care.

At the Summit, a new report was launched ‘: a value change to health systems’, which presented a compelling body of evidence to illustrate the true scale of the disease and the rising cost to the global economy.

Delegates heard how the burden of cancer is only set to intensify with new cancer diagnoses expected to increase by around 16-32 per cent over the next 10 years. The report also gave startling predictions on the rise in incidence of cancer from 2008 to 2030; by 65 per cent in high-income countries, 80 per cent in middle-income countries, and 100 per cent in the world’s poorest countries.

Policy makers were informed of the three root causes of excess spending, overtreatment and unnecessary interventions, technology without value and inefficient service delivery. To counter this, four clear policies were put forward. Informed patient engagement, better decision making, reduced costs with maintenance of standards of care and rewarding of outcomes. A roadmap to implement change was put to the Forum.

The report drew on a number of innovative projects from around the world to demonstrate how efficiencies could be driven and treatments improved for patients.

Professor Robert J S Thomas, ‘Delivering Affordable ’ WISH Forum Chair said: “Through our work we want to encourage governments, policy makers and healthcare organisations to address the problem of affordability in and treatment. This is a key and real issue for patients across the world. The status quo cannot be maintained when individual and total costs for are rising dramatically, and where we know we could deliver and drive better value. Today’s forum will provide practical solutions that can be put in place. These include optimal clinical pathways for patients, which can be costed and evaluated for wasteful interventions and provide benchmarks that can be used in a wide variety of settings to improve value for patients and providers”.

Professor The Lord Darzi of Denham, Executive Chair of WISH and Director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College of London, said: “Cancer has a huge impact on millions of lives globally and with populations ageing the disease’s prominence is only going to intensify. The only way to help patients get the treatment they need is to ensure that money across the world is spent effectively. This report offers a sensible and clear roadmap to help policymakers and healthcare professionals address the challenges we face today in trying to deliver affordable cancer care for future generations.”

Participating in the WISH Delivering Affordable Cancer Care panel discussion, Her Royal Highness Princess Ghida Talal, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the King Hussein Cancer Foundation (KHCF), said: “Affordability and accessibility have long been the core focus of our cancer care model at the King Hussein Cancer Foundation and Center and I look forward to sharing our experience in developing the model and discussing suggestions for further development as discussed in the report.”

Affordable cancer care: the report’s roadmap for action:

  1. Facilitating patient involvement in clinical decision-making
  2. Developing consistent and uniform transit for cancer patients through cost-informed clinical pathways
  3. Eliminating of waste in cancer care service systems
  4. Developing new costing models for drugs based on a ‘pay for results’ principle
  5. Introducing accountable care reward systems
  6. Address potentially disruptive technologies associated with genomic medicine

Delivering Affordable Cancer Care is one of eight reports being presented at the 2015 WISH Summit taking place in Qatar, where leading international health experts are joining an influential community of heads of state, government ministers, academics, clinicians, policy makers and business leaders to discuss innovative solutions to some of the most pressing global health challenges.

As well as Delivering Affordable Cancer Care, WISH will publish reports on Communicating Complex Health Messages, Diabetes, Universal Health Coverage, Dementia, Patient Safety, Mental Health and Wellbeing in Children, and Maternal and Newborn Health.

WISH is spearheaded by Qatar Foundation to inspire and diffuse healthcare innovation and best practice. It remains closely aligned to the vision and mission of QF to unlock human potential and reinforces Qatar’s pioneering role as an emerging centre for healthcare innovation.

To download the reports please visit www.wish.org.qa.


Source: World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH)