Monday , August 15 2022

The League Against Cancer proposes 11 measures to strengthen prevention


"At least 40% of cancers are prevented" because they are related to lifestyle (tobacco, food, alcohol, environmental factors …), said Christophe Leroux, director of the League's communication. Generates free vaccination against papillomavirus, taxed alcohol or better support research … The League Against Cancer presented at its centenary 11 measures following its first general prevention meeting.

Alcohol, to be taxed as tobacco

For the League, an increase in cancer cases should lead authorities to pursue an active prevention policy. "We went from 1,000 cases of cancer every day in France in 2013 to 1,100 in 2017, even if mortality is stable due to treatments. It is time to call for general mobilization to prevent," says Christophe Leroux. According to the National Cancer Institute (INCa), new cancer cases in France in 2017 are estimated at 400,000 and deaths to 150,000.

Among the strong proposals, the increase in alcohol tax, such as decisions on tobacco (the cigarette package will cost 10 euros in 2020). Approximately 8% of cancer cases registered in 2015 are related to regular alcohol consumption, according to the National Cancer Institute (INCa). "Scientific studies show an increased risk of cancer from average drinking per day," notes the League's communications director. However, in France, average daily consumption is between 3 and 4 glasses per person.

Redirect research to prevention

The League also suggests systematic vaccination at the beginning of the papillomavirus (HPV) college, sexually transmitted infections that can cause cancer in the cervix, anus or ENT cancers. In this area, France is behind, because the coverage rate against these infections is only 19%. In Australia, where an HPV vaccination campaign was launched 10 years ago, 80% of girls and 75% of boys are vaccinated and health authorities intend to eradicate this virus in 20 years.

Following the General Assembly, the League also explained that it wishes to better support research. Thus, he wants to dedicate 20% of the amounts allocated to cancer research to prevention. One of the objectives of this budget increase would be to find out more about what is called "cocktail effects", ie the accumulation of harmful effects of several carcinogenic substances, such as certain pesticides, for example.

Prevention is profitable

Finally, the rest of the proposals aim at ways to raise awareness about exposure to risk. This requires better information for the population on all risks related to cancer, raising childhood awareness and schooling, reducing inequalities in access to prevention, and finally recognition and professionalisation of preventive actors.

The Cancer League insists, through its proposals, on the need to strengthen prevention. "Previously, it was thought that a cancer prevention action lasted 20 or 25 years to produce effects," says Christophe Leroux. "But today we know it can be profitable immediately, including from a political point of view."

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