Asking Questions to Improve Cancer Care in B.C.

March 26, 2015

As a Distinguished Scientist in the BC Cancer Agency’s Cancer Control Research department, my role is to lead a large program looking at health economics, services, policy and ethics research related to the complexities of cancer diagnosis and treatment.

My days are spent meeting with many different kinds of stakeholders: academic researchers, policymakers, civil servants, patients and members of the public. Each has their own set of priorities; I feel that it’s important that we have a fair system that provides good value for money for all of the people in the province. As such the research we do addresses questions like:

  • How do we develop sustainable cancer systems?
  • How do we improve access to drugs and services for groups that have poor access?
  • How do we get better value for money from our health system?
  • How can the cancer system better meet the needs of the B.C. population?

Unfortunately we don’t have enough resources to provide all the treatments and program we would ever want. Difficult choices have to be made to ensure we don’t “break the bank” on health care. The main focus of my research is sustainability of the cancer system, addressing difficult challenges like increasing costs and increasing incidence of cancer and ensuring all people in B.C. get a fair, transparent and effective cancer system.