4th All-Ireland Cancer Conference

Mary Harney, T.D., Minister for Health and Children today formally opened the 4th All-Ireland Cancer Conference, which is being hosted in Dublin this year.

Speaking at the conference the Minister said: “This conference brings together leading national  and international cancer experts to address issues of common interest from cancer prevention to treatment. The approach of all involved is one of collaboration between experts to seek to develop a consensus on the management of cancer control.

Minister Harney congratulated all those involved in the Conference and paid tribute to their work  in the field of cancer treatment and science. “I would like to thank the Ireland – Northern Ireland – National Cancer Institute Consortium for their role in organising this conference. The programme is impressive and I am sure it will encourage shared knowledge, scientific analysis and challenging debate. There are many impressive speakers throughout the conference programme and I particularly welcome our colleagues from the National Cancer Institute and Northern Ireland” the Minister said.

Today at the 4th All-Ireland Cancer Conference there will be a focus on the current and future cancer burden and the potential for prevention strategies. Dr Max Parkin from OxfordUniversity will talk about the challenge facing public health due to the growth and ageing of the world population. Because of this, cancer will increase markedly in future years. Dr Parkin will highlight the contributions that overweight and obesity will make to the cancer burden in developed countries.

Other highlights from today’s events at the conference will be on prevention and screening. One of the key issues that will be discussed is how best to integrate screening and vaccination progranmmes. Dr Doug Lowy from the National Cancer Institute in the US who played an integral part in the development of the HPV vaccine will talk about HPV vaccination to prevent benign and malignant disease. Professor Michael Cummings from Roswell Park Institute, New York will speak in detail about Tobacco Control: A Cancer Vaccine That Works. Professor Cummings will tell delegates that if current tobacco consumption trends continue, tobacco use alone will account for 3.5 million deaths per year worldwide by 2030.

Other highlights will include: Dr Joe Harford from the US National Cancer Institute on the nine year history of the efforts of the Ireland-Northern Ireland-NCI Cancer Consortium to improve cancer control on the island of Ireland. Dr Eilish McCaughan (University of Ulster) on why men after cancer treatment felt they were “left on their own”, with limited access to, and input from health services, and Dr Philip Branton (Canadian Institute of Cancer Research) on the “serious discrepancies” in the way cancer research is funded.

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