Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control (CSCC) -

Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control (CSCC) and the need for a common strategy in Canada.
  • BCANS Community

Cancer Control (CSCC)

In December, 2003 representatives from BCANS attended the "National Cancer Leadership Forum" in Alymer, Quebec. The Forum brought together representatives from cancer organizations and coalitions from across the country to discuss the implementation of the Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control (CSCC).

The CSCC was formed to generate coast-to-coast-to-coast collaboration on ways to prevent and cure cancer, and improve the quality of life for people who have cancer. Implementation of a national strategic approach to cancer control will help to reduce cancer incidence, morbidity and mortality and enhance the quality of life of those with cancer.

The following organizations are leading the development and implementation of a Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control:

Planning for a Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control is the product of a broad two-year consultation process between 1999 and 2001. More than 700 individuals were involved representing every sector of cancer care in Canada. At the final consultation in February 2001, more than 250 representatives of cancer groups across the country met to develop recommendations for a national cancer control strategy that would focus energy and resources more effectively.

The main objective of the Forum was to build public and political support for the Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control. BCANS felt it was important to participate because Canadians are facing increased waiting times for cancer care, shortages of new health care providers and cancer specialists, lack of funding for supportive care and inadequate end-of-life care.

The Strategy for Cancer Control was launched four years ago, yet to date no real effort has been made to implement the strategy. Currently the strategy is funded by Health Canada and the National Cancer Institute of Canada at a rate of $600,000 per year. Compare this to the National Aids strategy that received 42 million in 2003 and the Diabetes Control Strategy, which will receive $115 million over 5 years.

According to national cancer statistics cancer killed 58, 703 people in 1997, ten times more than diabetes and almost 100 times more than AIDS. Clearly cancer is the largest single threat to the well being of Canadians and the disease that most often affects their families.

The Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control is a well thought out plan to deal with a disease which Health Canada projects will have a 70% increase in incidence by 2015. Both the professional and patient communities have endorsed the strategy but our government continues to under fund it. Does it not believe it worthy of the same national priority and funding commitment as diseases such as HIV/AIDS and diabetes?

As a result of our participation at the Cancer Leadership Forum, BCANS has committed to helping advance and promote the implementation of the CSCC. Your help is needed!

You can visit the Cancer Control web site:

Visit web sites of other organizations involved in the Strategy:

Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control: In The News How You Can Help:

Join the fight! Visit the Breast Forum web site for the latest updates, campaigns and information on the strategy. Strategies and sample letters for contacting your MP or MLA are available in the AdvoKit section. The web site can be found at:

Breast Cancer Treatment & Diagnosis Waiting Times

As waiting times for cancer treatments and diagnosis increase, an interesting decision was recently rendered by a Quebec judge. The decision centered on whether or not a class-action law suit on behalf of 10,000 Quebec women who waited more than the recommended eight weeks for radiation treatment could go forward.

The suit is being lead by Anahit Cilinger. Ms Cilinger was forced to wait for her treatment - in fact, she never received it - after 3 months of waiting, she called her daughter in Turkey and flew out of the country to Turkey for radiation therapy.

Have you experienced excessive waiting times for breast cancer treatment or diagnosis? Have comments on this legal challenge? BCANS wants to hear from you! Contact us at:

What can you do? Politicians need to become aware that delays in the treatment of cancer is a MAJOR health issue. If you have concerns about treatment and diagnosis waiting times, please write to your Minister of Parliament (MP) and/or your Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA), the Minister of Health.


(Halifax) November 29, 2004 —Breast Cancer Network Nova Scotia (BCNNS) will hold its second Community Capacity Building conference at the Delta Barrington on December 4 and 5, 2004. Breast cancer patients, survivors, health care providers, and representatives from various breast cancer organizations will come together to voice their concerns about breast cancer services and resources in each district health authority and formulate a strategic plan to guide Network activities. Attendees are expected from Sydney, New Glasgow, Bridgewater, Shelburne, Springhill, Truro, Parrsboro, Amherst, Scotch Village, Pictou, Port Hood, Mabou, Wolfville, Hubbards, Chester, Yarmouth, and HRM.

Kathleen Barclay, project lead, has seen the benefit of a large number of stakeholders working together on breast cancer care needs across the province. “It makes sense to bring in women who know what is needed in their community. They understand the problems, but they also know the solutions, and it is important that their voices be heard,” she states.

Nova Scotia was the last province in Canada to have a breast cancer network. Created in 2001, the Network is sponsored by Breast Cancer Action Nova Scotia (BCANS), and has received funding through the Community Capacity Building component of Health Canada’s Canadian Breast Cancer Initiative (CBCI), the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation-Atlantic Chapter, and Cancer Care Nova Scotia. The project also has the support of the Canadian Cancer Society: Nova Scotia Division (CCS), Nova Scotia Breast Screening, Titz ‘n Glitz, and many community-based breast cancer groups.

At the founding conference in 2001, women from across the province gathered to map gaps and assets. Gaps in some district health authorities were staggering. Projects were identified and implemented to improve services for those diagnosed with breast cancer, including the creation of a provincial resource directory for breast cancer patients/survivors. “What’s different about this conference is that people now know about the network and their passion to make change is higher than ever. They feel confident that their voice will be heard and that real change will happen,” Barclay adds.

BCANS is a survivor-driven group that voices the unique concerns of people living with breast cancer. BCANS has a long history of promoting education about breast health and breast cancer, developing networks among women with breast cancer, and providing a reliable online source of breast cancer information and support.

Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer among Nova Scotian women. In 2004, it is estimated that 690 women in the province will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and 200 women will die from the disease. Early detection of breast cancer can greatly increase survival rates.