This is the monthly newsletter on public affairs sent by ESTRO to national societies
This is the ESTRO Public Affairs newsletter: a monitoring service offered by ESTRO to national societies of the radiation oncology area to keep up-to-date with oncopolicy issues.
This issue of the newsletter is dedicated to Manifestos at the European Level
Focus of the month
The ECF ESTRO White Paper and EU Policy Forum

Happening Across Europe at a glance
Other news
  • The first EU citizens using ePrescriptions in another European country
  • Chemicals and endocrine disruptors addressed by EU legislators 
  • The European Reference Network (ERN) call for membership
  • Calls for Proposals 


"Beating Cancer: Mission Possible.
Towards Effective Cancer Control in Europe"

- The MEPs Against Cancer (MAC) Group's Electoral Manifesto

On 29 January 2019, the European MEPs Against cancer announced its’ motion by the electoral manifesto for effective cancer control in Europe. Ahead of the election in 23-26 May 2019, six MEPs:  Alojz Peterle (Slovenia, EPP) , MEP Pavel Poc (Czech Republic, S&D), MEP Biljana Borzan (Croatia, S&D), MEP José Inacio Faria (Portugal, EPP), MEP Dubravka Suica (Croatia, EPP) and MEP Lieve Wierinck (Belgium, ALDE), met in Brussels and signed the manifesto reinforcing the MEPs commitment to collaborate on improving cancer treatment in Europe.
Some of the initiatives continue to support the prevention, early diagnosis and equal access. For example, new diagnostic tools and treatments, such as biological antibody medicines and cancer screening. Next to prevention, the MAC group backs the focus on unmet medical needs. More notably, the increase in the investment of cancer research and filling the gaps of commercially-driven research to ensure:


  • the safe return of investment and enhancing the use of the European Reference Networks for rare oncological disorders
  • closer collaboration in horizon scanning of emerging medical technologies 
  • core measures for increased efficiency in cancer research and treatment

Fair process of innovative technologies should be secured. MEP Lieve Wierinck, also host  of several ESTRO events at the European Parliament, particularly emphasised her unwavering engagement to bringing clinical research and innovation to patients with focusing on the quality of life pointers in clinical studies.
The MAC group calls for patient empowerment in the decision-making process on issues linked to their treatment and quality of life with the aim that the EU will be a global leader in the fight against cancer. Priority will be given to measures aiming to improve the health of all population groups, inclusive the most vulnerable ones.


                             The European Parliament Panel STOA & EORTC manifesto

The EP panel on the future of Science and Technology (STOA) and the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) launched at a meeting on the 10 January, the “innovative solutions for research in healthcare“  Key elements in the delivery of innovation in rare diseases and cancer treatment are identified as data collection and mapping, such as genome editing for rare diseases and multiple targeted treatments for cancer. Also, the existing disconnection between the digital revolution and the regulatory environment (e.g. the GDPR regulation). The manifesto includes the following six recommendations to facilitate the paradigm change:

     1) Appropriate use of treatments for optimizing patients' health outcomes and preserving public          healthcare budgets
     2) Treatment Optimisation has to take place early
     3) Treatment Optimisation must cover all treatment options and modalities available for a given           medical condition 
     4) Member states and payers should support the Treatment Optimisation at a relevant scale
     5) Treatment Optimisation will benefit from new models of partnership
     6) Treatment Optimisation will support industry competitiveness and reputation
The manifesto will be circulated to Member States. Policy asks that will be further discussed at EU level include the following:


  • Europe in partnership with Member States should establish treatment optimisation as an official and mandatory step
  • National legislation should include provision allowing for publicly funded international research to address collective therapeutic challenges
  • The EU's next Horizon programme should support treatment optimisation 

                          The Standing Committee of European Doctors (CPME) Manifesto

The CPME group has also announced its’ electoral manifesto confirming their commitment to the access of medicines and the continued investment in health and training of healthcare providers. Emphasis is placed on promoting trust in the sharing of health data to advance medical research and development, and in compliance with the basic ethical standards and patients’ rights.

"Cancer will remain one of the main challenges European citizens will face and it is of utmost importance for both national and EU policymakers to act towards the implementation of stronger cancer control"

-  MEPs Against Cancer Intergroup, The Parliament Magazine Jan 2019 
The ESTRO ECF White Paper and EU Policy Forum

ECF and ESTRO held a policy forum at the European Parliament hosted by Lieve Wierinck MEP to highlight the importance of radiotherapy as a core pillar of cancer care. The forum, titled Radiotherapy: seizing the opportunity in cancer care, focused on the current challenges surrounding access to high-quality radiotherapy which were published in our recently launched white paper.  The meeting presented the campaign five-point plan

Read more

Happening across Europe at a glance

BELGIUM >> Belgium’s National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance recently commissioned to the Belgian Health Care Centre a research on the effectiveness of proton therapy which concluded that there is still lack of evidence. More studies are ongoing and will be concluded in the years to come. For the time being, Belgium will continue financing on a case-by-case basis. Read more
CROATIA >>MEP Suica explains that 30 members of the Croatian Parliament, from different parties have recently met to launch an inters group on cancer like the MAC group. Read more
DENMARK >> The mobile app “My Doctor” issued by the Health Ministry has been a success story in Denmark. Danes can contact their doctor, access their medical records and view their vaccination histories. Read more

GERMANY >> New research strategy against cancer has been announced jointly by Germany’s Research and Health Ministries, named the “National Decade Against Cancer.” Federal health minister, Jens Spahn calls for closer integration between research and care. The initiative includes €62 million for “practice-changing clinical trials,” funded by the research ministry. Read more here

SLOVAKIA >> A new oncology action plan to boost cancer prevention has been approved by the government. Read more here
The UK  >> The NHS Foundation Trust in Manchester will offer a proton beam therapy to a British teenager to treat a rare brain tumour. This is one of the first patients to undergo publicly-funded proton beam therapy in the UK. Read more

UK and the impact of BREXIT >>Medicines supply shortage is the greatest concern. England’s chief pharmaceutical officer Keith Ridge on ‘the updates on the work on the continuity of supply of medicines as part of the Government’s contingency preparations for a ‘no deal’ EU exit.’ Read more
Contingency measures in case of a no-case scenario BREXIT deal

>>UK funding recipients continue to receive payments under the current EU funding contracts, taken that the UK fulfills its’ financial obligations under the EU budget. This, however, is only applicable to contracts signed and decision made before 30 March 2019. Report on the BREXIT impact on the Horizon Europe Programme.
IRELAND has issued a “watch-list” of 24 drugs which are subject to shortages in case of a no-deal BREXIT. The Irish health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) has provided updated guidelines outlining the appropriate methods for evaluating the clinical effectiveness of health technologies. Read more
ROMANIA took over the EU presidency on 1 January 2019 reassuring their commitment to HTA, e-Health and access to medicine. Read more
SWITZERLAND, GERMANY & FINLAND >> Following a recent collaborative agreement between ROCHE, the Swiss based pharmaceutical company and Finnish Kaiku Health, launched the new patient support modules for immune checkpoint inhibitor monotherapy and combination therapy. It will be rolled out in the first half of 2019 in Germany, Switzerland and Finland. Read more 

The first EU citizens using ePrescription in another European country   

Thanks to the EU-funded e-health digital service infrastructure (eHDSI or eHealth DSI), by an agreement between Finnish and Estonian pharmacists the first EU citizens can use digital prescriptions in another EU country to get medicines abroad. 

Read more
Chemical and endocrine  disruptors addressed by EU legislators


A provisional agreement was reached on 29 January to broaden the list of recognized cancer-causing chemical in the work place, under  the Carcinogens and Mutagens Directive. The protection of workers from cancer-causing chemicals reinforces the political commitment to the European Pillar of Social Rights. 

Read more

The European Reference Network (ERN) call for membership

The next call for new centres to join EURCAN and for existing centres to expand to other rare domains, is postponed to the first trimester 2019. 

In a statement DG Sante explains: "The launch for the new call depends on the amendment of th e 2014 implementing decision. Currently we have no certain date for the adoption of the emending decision. If an approximate date [is needed], at this stage we may expect that the amending decision to be adopted in the first trimester 2019 and the launching of the call will follow the adoption."

For updates regarding the future call for ERNs will be posted on the DG Sante and on the EUACAN website

Calls for Proposals 
  MSCA-COFUND 2019: Co-funding of regional, national and international programmes deadline April 4 2019
PCP Pre-Commercial Procurement: Innovation Procurement: Next generation sequencing (NGS) for routine diagnosis
deadline: 16 April 2019
SC1-DTH-01-2019: Big Data and Artificial Intelligence for monitoring health status and quality of life after cancer treatment deadline April 24 2019

IMI2-RIA Research and Innovation action: Open access chemogenomics library and chemical probes for the druggable genome.Stage 1 deadline: 25 April 2019
RIA Research and Innovation action: Improving low-dose radiation risk appraisal in medicine deadline 25 September 2019
CSA Coordination and support action: Research roadmap for medical applications of ionising radiation deadline: 25 September 2019
RIA Research and Innovation action: Further integrating Radiation Protection research in the EU deadline: 25 September 2019
CSA Coordination and support action: Optimised use of European research reactors deadline: 25 September 2019
RIA Research and Innovation action: Optimised fuels for production of medical radioisotopes deadline: 25 September 2019

For a list calls on the topics under the Euratom Research and Training Programme click here.
If you have any questions  please contact Gabriella Axelsson
ESTRO Public Affairs Project Manager
Copyright © 2019 ESTRO, All rights reserved.

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