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Swiss health officials open new front on war on cancer

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11:22 CEST+02:00

A Swiss anti-cancer association has launched a new national cancer programme for 2011-2015 to help stop the disease from spreading.


According to Oncosuisse, Switzerland is one of the high-risk countries for cancer disease, with the highest incidence of prostate cancer, breast cancer and colorectal cancer.

In recent decades, the number of new cancer patients per 100,000 inhabitants has continued to rise, particularly because of the increased proportion of older people in the population, it said.

 The group said its programme is aimed at increasing national coordination in the country, ensuring all cantons have a cancer registry, collect data of the relevant population, and study risk factors, such as environmental pollutants, genetic interactions with the environment and lifestyle, as well as possible countermeasures.

The association is also calling for the setup of systematic screening programmes for breast, colon and cervical cancer nationwide to ensure early detection, besides working on rehabilitation, palliative care and psychological assistance to patients and their families.

Oncosuisse said similar targets set by its previous cancer programme for 2005-2010 have yet to be achieved. 

According to the latest figures, lung cancer, prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, cancer of the liver and pancreatic cancer are responsible for more than half of cancer-related deaths in men in Switzerland, while breast, lung, colorectal, pancreatic and ovarian cancers account for 56 percent of deaths in women.

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