TORONTO, Dec. 21 /CNW/ - A new international study shows that, among 12 jurisdictions across six countries, Ontario is one of the top performers in cancer survival rates.

"These results are very encouraging.  They confirm that the cancer control strategies Ontario has put in place for early screening, timely diagnosis and improved access to care are resulting in improved survival rates for the most common types of cancer," said Terrence Sullivan, president and CEO, Cancer Care Ontario.

The study by the International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership (ICBP) is the first international partnership of clinicians, academics and policy makers, trying to understand how and why cancer survival varies between countries and health jurisdictions.

Partner countries have similar wealth, access to universal health care and longstanding, high-quality, population-based cancer registries.  The six countries in the study are: Australia, Canada, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom.  In Canada, in addition to Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia and Manitoba are participating in the Study.

For colorectal cancer survival, Ontario ranked first in Canada and third among all 12 health jurisdictions; for lung and ovarian cancers, Ontario ranked second overall.

Ontario contributed the second largest number of cases to the study after England, and rated near the top for five-year survival after diagnosis for the four types of cancer studied: colorectal, lung, ovarian and breast.

"While we are happy with these results, there is much more to be done. Since 2005, the Ontario Cancer Plan has provided a roadmap to improve cancer services and the 2011-2015 Plan continues this progress with the goal of creating the best cancer system in the world," said Terrence Sullivan.

This initial study will be followed by four separate areas of research that will examine different aspects of cancer survival to study possible reasons for differences between ICBP partners.

In total the Partnership will examine: Epidemiology (just released); Population awareness and beliefs; Beliefs, behaviours and systems in primary care; Root cause of diagnosis and treatment delays; and Treatment, co-morbidities and other factors.

Cancer Care Ontario continually improves cancer services so that fewer people get cancer and patients receive better care.

Read more about the 2011-2015 Ontario Cancer Plan: http://ocp.cancercare.on.ca

Read more about the International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership: http://press.thelancet.com/cancersurvivalicbp.pdf 

SOURCE Cancer Care Ontario

For further information: For further information:

Elizabeth McCarthy, Senior Advisor, Public Affairs
Cancer Care Ontario
416-971-9800 x 3339

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