COMMENTARY

Preview of Practice-Changing Data From ECCO/ESMO

David J. Kerr, MD

Disclosures

September 16, 2011

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Hi. I am David Kerr, Professor of Cancer Medicine at Oxford and President of the European Society for Medical Oncology. It is my pleasure to be able to welcome you to the European Multidisciplinary Cancer Congress (known as ECCO) meeting, which is being held in the wonderful archipelago of Stockholm [Sweden] starting on September 22. This is a truly multidisciplinary gathering and increasingly reflects the way that we practice cancer medicine. We need our teams of pathology, radiation therapists, medical oncologists, nurses, support from our imaging colleagues, and so on to be able to make optimal decisions on behalf of our patients. The ECCO meeting is set up wonderfully to bring all those different specialties together. We have surgical oncologists mingling with medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, and cancer nurse specialists as well as a very strong patient theme at this year's meeting.

We have 34 late-breaking abstracts. I am delighted that with my friend and colleague, President of this ECCO meeting, Michael Baumann, we selected some abstracts that we believe will be practice-changing new information. So we welcome you to come along to what has become quite a unique meeting. Where else do the different specialties gather under one roof and share new information in this way? I also must pay great tribute to Dr. Baumann for setting up an Oncopolicy Forum. One of the things that ECCO, which is an umbrella organization that brings together the main European cancer societies, manages to do is to seek to influence a transnational European policy. Therefore, we have a very strong oncopolicy theme that addresses disparities, inequities, and the differences between the rich and the poor. We aim to look at the cost of cancer treatment. We aim to look at the variation and incidence in mortality when we compare different European nations or different populations. We aim to look at the depth and degree of research and development and how we might build transnational networks to compete more strongly and to elevate our standards.

So this is a great opportunity for us to gather together and learn some fantastic new information. Some fairly high-quality science is being made available to us along a strong theme that is based on inequities, which we as a society of cancer experts, working with our patients, might seek and strive to overcome. All of this is framed in the beautiful archipelago of Stockholm. What could be better? I look forward to welcoming you to the meeting. I know that you will enjoy the quality of the science and the ambience of the meeting. I look forward to seeing you soon. Thank you.

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