COCIR Statement ahead of the COREPER meeting regarding the new Council Recommendation on cancer screening

COCIR joins its voice – the voice of the Medical technologies and devices industry – to that of many others in the health community, and calls on the Council to adopt the European Commission’s proposed text regarding the new Council Recommendation on cancer screening.

The earlier cancer is detected, the higher the likeliness of survival. Effective cancer screening with precision diagnostic equipment for early detection of cancer is therefore essential in reducing cancer mortality in Europe. Early cancer detection and diagnosis are linked with curable stages of cancer, less invasive treatment options, better rehabilitation, and cost-effectiveness. It is, therefore, essential to have a European Recommendation that encourages the uptake of screening in a harmonised and uniform manner for all - as it is foreseen in Europe's Beating Cancer Plan.

The European Commission's proposal was based on the conclusions of the European Scientific Advice Mechanism and was strongly supported by patients and the scientific community as an efficient tool for beating cancer by patients, and healthcare professionals and providers alike. If diluted, the new Recommendation, would only impair the equitable and universal access of European citizens to quality healthcare.  Instead of resolving, it would sustain the significant disparities that are observed across the EU Member States in both the adoption of and access to cancer screening programmes.

To that end, we call on the Council to vote for the initial text provided by the European Commission, without alterations.