Cancer is the leading cause of death among EU citizens aged 65 or more. Unfortunately, in Eastern Europe, much more people die of cancer as compared to Western Europe. Moreover, life expectancy in Bulgaria is the lowest in the European Union.”
In Petar Vitanov’s view, this is due to insufficient health care and the lack of health prophylaxis:
“The Knowledge Center on Cancer will collect and provide up-to-date information about the oncological diseases, map the latest evidence on cancer and assist in formulating policies in the field of prophylaxis. This is an extremely serious problem in Bulgaria. In Denmark, 80% of women aged between 50 and 70 undergo prophylactic screening. In Bulgaria, this percentage is significantly lower. That is why I believe that the new Knowledge Center will help Bulgaria increase the quality of health services, because it will be able to implement a series of good practices from the Western European countries”, noted MEP Petar Vitanov.
In his words, reducing the prices of medicines for cancer sufferers is key to high-quality medical treatment. EU joint procurement of cancer medicines is expected to ease the shortage of these medicines in some member states and practically lead to lower prices. The smooth coordination between the EU countries would improve cancer treatment in each EU member state, contends Petar Vitanov. Let us not forget that according to experts, 40% of the new cancer cases are due to the lack of healthy nutrition, physical activities, smoking, and excessive alcohol consumption.