Cancer strategy steering group developed

A steering group to develop a national cancer strategy for the next 10 years has been established by Health Minister Leo Varadkar.

The group will be chaired by Prof John Kennedy, a consultant medical oncologist at St James’s Hospital in Dublin and will report to the minister later this year.

The minister has also established a cancer patient forum to allow patients have their say on the development of the 2016-2025 programme.

Members of the public and other organisations will also be able to have their say through the department’s website www.health.gov.ie in the coming weeks.

Some of the issues that the new strategy will address include prevention measures and improving the quality of life for people recovering from cancer. The strategy will also seek to ensure that services are on a par with top international performers.

The forum has 16 members, with most having had direct experience of cancer services. It is chaired by Michael Conroy, principal officer of the Department of Health’s cancer, blood and organs policy unit. The forum has met twice already and agreed Máiréad Mangan of the ARC Cancer Support Centre in Dublin will sit on the steering committee.

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