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GCR shines light on radiotherapy inequalities and policy impact at Economist World Cancer Series

The Global Coalition for Radiotherapy (GCR) attended and participated in the 9th Annual World Cancer Series, 20-21 September 2023. This two-day summit, organized by Economist Impact, featured over 90 speakers, focused on "Enhancing Lives through Revolutionary Approaches to Prevention, Care, and Healing."

Prof. Pat Price, Prof. Eric Deutsch, Dr. Tim Hanna, Sarah Quinlan, Prof. Michelle Leech, Dr. Rolando Comacho (L-R)

Professor Pat Price remarked that it “was the best one yet; extremely timely as Europe strives to improve cancer care and improve access to good quality cancer treatment for all.”

Prof. Pat Price

Professor Price served as the moderator and presenter for all speakers in the radiotherapy/radio-oncology tracks. “The comprehensive approach was key and I was delighted that radiotherapy was highlighted so well. With so many innovations in radiotherapy and the emerging international consensus of essential of radiotherapy within National Cancer control plans, the future for cancer patients will look that little bit brighter.”


Shining a light further on radiotherapy access was the panel discussion, “Making steps to achieve equitable access to radiotherapy,” led by GCR participants Sarah Quinlan, Dr. Rolando Comacho, Dr. Timothy Hanna, and Prof. Michelle Leech.


Dr. Tim Hanna, Sarah Quinlan (L-R)

“As the second most effective cure for cancer and an incredibly cost-effective solution, it is essential that access to quality radiotherapy is improved globally, with a focus on international collaboration to support the delivery of services and advocate for radiotherapy to be a fundamental part of all country’s cancer control plans. Taking part meant we were able to be part of these important conversations and drive the importance of taking action that ultimately improves outcomes for cancer patients,” said Quinlan.

The presentations covered a broad range of topics, including patient advocacy, ensuring access to high quality radiotherapy, data, collaboration, education and how to better personalize radiotherapy treatments.


Sarah Quinlan, Prof. Michelle Leech, Dr. Rolando Comacho (L-R)

GCR Director of Communication, Darien Laird, also attended the event and explained the overarching themes of all presentations that brought the cancer community closer together in finding value based solutions for the future of cancer care. “We are pleased that the resounding feedback from the workforce, industry and policy makers in attendance is that all treatment modalities must come together to ensure there is equitable access for patients,” said Laird.


Professor Price concluded, “We thank the Economist for bringing together such important and thoughtful discussions.”


Feature presentations

The summit featured many noteworthy presentations, panels, and prominent speakers, including:


Presentation: The importance of radiotherapy
  • Dr. Mary Gospodarowicz, Professor of Radiation Oncology, University of Toronto and Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network and Board Member, UICC


Panel: Making steps to achieve equitable access to radiotherapy

Moderated by: Pat Price, Clinical Oncologist, Chair of Radiotherapy UK and co-founder of GCR

Panelists:

  • Prof. Eric Deutsch, Chair of Department of Radiation Oncology, Gustave Roussy Cancer Campus

  • Dr. Timothy Hanna, Clinician Scientist, Queen’s University Cancer Research Institute

  • Sarah Quinlan, Charity Director, Radiotherapy UK

  • Prof. Michelle Leech, Professor of Radiation Therapy, Trinity College Dublin

  • Dr. Rolando Camacho, Global Technical Lead, City Cancer Challenge


Presentation: How will radio-oncology look in 2030
  • Dr. Anna Kirby, President, European Society of Radiotherapy & Oncology


Panel: Advances in radio-oncology

Moderated by: Pat Price, Clinical Oncologist, Chair of Radiotherapy UK and co-founder of GCR

Panelists:

  • Dr. Ricky Sharma, Head of Clinical Affairs, Varian, a Siemens Healthineers company

  • Prof. Goran Marosevic, Medical Director, Medical Centre Mediko

  • Dr. Anna Kirby, President, European Society of Radiotherapy & Oncology

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