Transforming Breast Cancer Together (TBCT) is a multi-stakeholder initiative deeply committed to improving breast cancer care in Europe, along the entire pathway. Concerned that the COVID-19 outbreak continues to pose a direct threat to Europeans' lives by disrupting the continuity and quality of care in other disease areas, they has published a paper to underline these challenges and call the EU policymakers to draw the learning from the pandemic to dimish the existing inequalities and guarantee the best possible care for breast cancer patients in the EU.
TBCT calls EU policymakers to:
1. Invest in both primary and secondary prevention, including genetic counselling, testing and management of BRCA carriers.
2. Provide adequate support to Member States to achieve the EBCP's target of 90% screening for breast cancer by 2025.
3. Ensure effective and quality breast cancer care and treatment, including the use of innovative health technologies for breast cancer patients.
4. Ensure that all diagnosed with breast cancer have access to treatment in a specialist breast-unit (Centre) by a multidisciplinary team, including women with advanced and metastatic breast cancer.
5. Apply the lessons learned from the COVID-19 crisis and improve the timely approval of innovative therapies, reducing the immense inequalities in patient access between EU Member States.
6. Leverage the European Commission's European Health Data Space plans to put in place a harmonised breast cancer registry process in the EU for collecting early breast cancer and metastatic breast cancer data.
7. Maximise the opportunities for patients to flexibly maintain or return to work, look after their families and contribute to society before, during and after treatment.
8. Ensure more attention is dedicated to improving the quality of life of patients and their families, with a special attention for those with advanced/metastatic disease and terminal conditions.
9. Improve the management of late and long-term and side effects, unmet psychosocial needs, issues related to emotional distress that negatively affect the patient's quality of life.