Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on September 15, 2010
This October, you will have a unique opportunity to unite with thousands of cancer survivor, caregivers, advocates and concerned citizens, and increase public awareness of the urgent need to put cancer on the global health agenda. The Maximize Life Global Cancer Awareness Campaign will be officially launched simultaneously in Seattle and Washington D.C. on September 25th. These events will be followed by awareness events in numerous locations in over 30 countries around the world. All events will feature the opportunity for survivors, caregivers, and the general public alike to add their name in support of the World Cancer Declaration.
The World Cancer Declaration was developed by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), adopted by the World Cancer Summit 2008, and endorsed by the World Cancer Congress 2008. It sets 11 targets to be achieved by 2020 such as addressing inequalities in access to prevention, diagnosis and treatment; and ensuring that all countries develop a national cancer control plan.
As a member of the UICC, as well as the Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) Alliance, The Max Foundation is joining efforts to raise awareness among public officials in preparation for the upcoming United Nations Summit on Non-Communicable Diseases to be attended by Heads of State in September 2011. This Summit will mark the first time in history that the United Nations will address cancer as a global health problem.
There is great inequality in the availability of resources to treat cancer around the world. While 70 percent of all cancer deaths occur in low and middle income countries, only 5 percent of resources are currently available to these countries. Lack of availability of treatment is compounded by lack of access to pain medication, as well. Ninety percent of the world’s morphine and opium are consumed by 10 percent of the world population; and many low and middle income countries lack a national cancer control plan.
Yet, we know that two thirds of cancers are either preventable or treatable. We must act now; never before has there been an opportunity to make a difference for the sake of our loved ones and our future generations.