Over the past decades, survival rates of cancer patients have increased impressively through the introduction of screening, new drugs and more personalised multi-modality treatments. This success in treating cancer has resulted in a large and rapidly increasing number of cancer survivors. Unfortunately, now that cancer is controlled in many patients, it has become clear that the life expectancy and quality of life of cancer survivors may be compromised by a spectrum of late adverse treatment effects. Some cancer survivors encounter second malignancies, severe cardiovascular or other morbidities which impair normal life in an important way. Some patients may be confronted with difficulties such as societal discrimination due to slower performance, chronic fatigue or partial inability, acceptance for work, education, insurance or credit history. To address these new issues, the EORTC is launching a variety of initiatives. Early in 2013, the EORTC Cancer Survivorship Task Force was created. The 1st EORTC Cancer Survivorship Summit will take place 30–31 January 2014 to facilitate interaction between clinicians, researchers, social workers, patients, insurers, bankers and policy makers. This summit will address the situation and needs of cancer survivors and guide future research and health policies in Europe in this field.
Elizabeth Charlotte Moser, Safaa Ramadan, John Bean, Françoise Meunier
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