The Value of Diagnostic Information in Cancer Care – Policy recommendations for a better future for cancer diagnostics in Europe

Posted on 23.06.2022

MedTech Europe has compiled evidence demonstrating the importance of diagnostic information in cancer care. Laboratory diagnostics are critical at all stages of cancer care. With Europe’s Beating Cancer plan as a backdrop, the time has come to implement policy changes that will provide patients with better access to screening and early diagnostics while improving patient outcomes.

This paper outlines five key recommendations for improving cancer care in Europe:

  1. Promote robust national policies for cancer prevention, screening, and early diagnosis in the National cancer plans.
  2. Address cancer inequalities with the Cancer Inequity registry by including the rate of participation in cancer screening, time to diagnosis, and rate of early detection as well as the related enabling infrastructures in its indicators.
  3. Ensure broad and timely patient access to innovative diagnostics to improve cancer patient outcomes.
  4. Assess the value of laboratory diagnostics considering their benefit in enabling screening and early detection, their role at all stages of the cancer care continuum and the broader societal value of improved patient outcomes.
  5. Improve healthcare systems preparedness, ensuring continuity of cancer care during a future health crisis and talking about delayed cancer care and diagnosis.

With the burden of cancer expected to increase, it is crucial that the full potential of laboratory diagnostics for cancer is realised. European Union and the Member States need strong, coordinated policies that recognise the strength of robust cancer screening strategies and early detection. These policies must take a holistic approach – reflecting the value of diagnostic information across the full cancer care continuum (screening, diagnosis, treatment and monitoring) and for all stakeholders (patients, healthcare professionals, healthcare providers and the healthcare system as a whole).