Advocacy Training 2012 Press Release

Advocacy Training 2012 Press Release
November 20, 2012
Milan, Italy

58 Breast Cancer Advocates Complete  European Training Course
58 breast cancer advocates from 33 of EUROPA DONNA’s 46 member countries in Europe completed a breast cancer advocacy training course here from November 9-11 2012. They learned about the latest developments in breast cancer research and treatment  as well as advocacy techniques that can be used to influence public health policy. This was followed by a full day workshop designed to sharpen their communication and presentation skills. The two and a half-day course was sponsored and organised by EUROPA DONNA – The European Breast Cancer Coalition.

Physicians and researchers from Europe’s top cancer institutions briefed the advocates on the current directions in breast cancer research and treatment. Over a period of a day and a half, experts from the Istituto Mario Negri (Italy), the University of Geneva Medical School (Switzerland), the Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori (Italy), European Institute of Oncology (IEO, Italy) Università degli Studi “La Sapienza” S. Andrea, Roma (Italy) and the medical director of the breast cancer screening program of the canton of Fribourg (Switzerland), as well as others, provided the 58 advocates with essential scientific background on the biology of breast cancer, the epidemiological aspects of the disease,  clinical trials in progress, as well as the most current diagnostic and treatment methods.

Dr Giuseppe Curigliano described the latest research in breast cancer in his lecture on Clinical Trials. Adriana Bonifacino provided an overview of breast cancer treatments, while Bettina Borisch gave the advocates an excellent overview of the biology of breast cancer. Perhaps equally important as treatment and research, however, is early diagnosis of breast cancer, which relies on thorough and effective screening as set out in European screening guidelines, as well as coordinated care after diagnosis.  EUROPA DONNA is actively lobbying at the European as well as at national levels for Specialist Breast Units, as called for in the European Parliament’s Breast Cancer Resolutions of June 2003 and October 2006, and for the implementation of the European Guidelines for Quality Assurance in Breast Cancer Screening and Diagnosis.

The purpose of this course  is to ensure that breast cancer advocates in  Europe have the information they need and have developed the appropriate skills to use that information effectively in their countries. Armed with the latest information about research and treatment, these breast cancer advocates will now return to their countries to pursue their own national – as well as European – agendas. They will continue their work to see that adequate funding and proper attention are given to provide the best available breast cancer screening and treatment to all European women.

At the conclusion of the advocacy training Susan Knox, Executive Director of EUROPA DONNA, announced that the next European Breast Cancer Advocacy Training Course, which is  held annually, will take place in November 2013, in Milan, Italy.

For more information contact:
Karen Benn – Head of Policy/Public Affairs +39 02 3659 2280