Cancer screening and health system resilience: keys to protecting and bolstering preventive services during a financial crisis

Eur J Cancer. 2012 Sep;48(14):2212-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ejca.2012.02.060. Epub 2012 Mar 15.


The aim of this paper is to elucidate the rationale for sustaining and expanding cost-effective, population-based screening services for breast, cervical and colorectal cancers in the context of the current financial crisis. Our objective is not only to promote optimal delivery of high-quality secondary cancer prevention services, but also to underline the importance of strengthening comprehensive cancer control, and with it, health system response to the complex care challenges posed by all chronic diseases. We focus primarily on issues surrounding planning, organisation, implementation and resources, arguing that given the growing cancer burden, policymakers have ample justification for establishing and expanding population-based programmes that are well-organised, well-resourced and well-executed. In a broader economic context of rescue packages, deficits and cutbacks to government entitlements, health professionals must intensify their advocacy for the protection of vital preventive health services by fighting for quality services with clear benefits for population health outcomes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Budgets
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Delivery of Health Care / economics*
  • Delivery of Health Care / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Delivery of Health Care / organization & administration
  • Economic Recession* / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Health Care Costs* / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Health Planning / economics
  • Health Policy / economics
  • Humans
  • Mass Screening / economics*
  • Mass Screening / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Mass Screening / methods
  • Mass Screening / organization & administration
  • National Health Programs / economics*
  • National Health Programs / legislation & jurisprudence
  • National Health Programs / organization & administration
  • Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Neoplasms / economics*
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Organizational Objectives
  • Policy Making
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Preventive Health Services / economics*
  • Preventive Health Services / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Preventive Health Services / organization & administration