ESTRO Annual Report 2018

Portugal • In cooperation with ART the Portuguese radiotherapy community’s annual event – on the 10th of November, Marie Curie Legacy addressed radiotherapy gaps in Portugal. The campaign’s focused the identification of main national concerns preventing radiotherapy from being perceived as an innovative and effective cancer treatment leveraging on evidence and data on benefits of it being an appropriate treatment for patients. Portuguese lay press, medical press to general and specialized in health media showed a particular interest in the campaign and covered it greatly by producing 16 clippings for online as well as traditional media for an audience of more than 2 million readers.

The White Paper in Radiotherapy

The white paper “Radiotherapy: seizing the opportunity in cancer care” has been published in November 2018 . A group of experts representing the RT community addressed in the paper the need to ensure RT is correctly positioned in cancer care: this report aims to demonstrate the significant role of radiotherapy in achieving high quality cancer care and highlights what needs to be done to close the current gap in utilisation of radiotherapy across Europe. The white paper recommends a five-point plan to boost uptake of radiotherapy and calls on all stakeholders – governments and policymakers, healthcare professionals, patients and professional societies, along with national and international research funds – to become ‘radiotherapy ambassadors’ to help raise awareness of the benefits of radiotherapy and secure its valuable position in comprehensive, optimal cancer care.

The report’s authors cite shortages of high-quality equipment, variations in training, insufficient integration of radiotherapy into treatment plans, lack of investment in research, lack of general understanding of radiotherapy as a cancer treatment and misconceptions regarding the safety of radiotherapy among the important factors contributing to radiotherapy’s poor image and underuse . The report has been launched to coincide with the anniversary of the birth of Marie Curie, as part of the Marie Curie Legacy Campaign launched in 2017. The White Paper will be officially presented and discussed during the Policy Forum organized at the EU Parliament in Brussels on 31st January 2019. During this public-facing event hosted by MEPs, the White Paper will be presented and discussed targeting different stakeholders and providing recommendations on policy changing.



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