B.C.’s cancer survival rates stand out

December 22, 2010

I’m pleased to be today’s special guest blogger and to share with you our excitement about a study that highlights the quality of cancer care in British Columbia and the role that research plays in it.

The study, published today in the prestigious international journal The Lancet, compares outcomes for breast, ovarian, lung, and colorectal cancer among Canada, Australia, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and the United Kingdom over the period from 1995–2007. These six nations were chosen because of their similar wealth and systems of universal health care.

Here is a summary of some of the results:

– British Columbia has the highest one- and five-year survival rates for ovarian cancer.

– There was an overall survival increase of nine per cent for women of all ages diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

– British Columbia also has the highest five-year survival rate for breast cancer.

– Survival rates have also increased in our province for lung and colorectal cancer.

As the President of the BC Cancer Agency, it’s extremely rewarding to see studies like this that show that our efforts are working.  Better outcomes can only come from improvements to care.  Improvements to care come from new evidence.  And new evidence only comes from groundbreaking research.

And of course, research relies on the support and partnership we receive from BC Cancer Foundation donors.

This study confirms that the partnership between research and philanthropy in B.C. is making a tangible difference in the lives of cancer patients and their families.  World-class care is being provided and research is translating into more effective treatments.  The outcomes are showing this is so.

You can read the news release from the BC Cancer Agency that further explains this study here.  You can also read the full scientific article by going to www.thelancet.com

I thank you very much for your partnership and hope that we can continue to share good news such as this with you in 2011. Kind regards, Dr. David Levy President, BC Cancer Agency