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Varadkar launches clinical guidelines for breast and prostate cancer

The new guidelines were drafted by the National Cancer Control Programme (NCCP) and quality assured by the Department of Health’s National Clinical Effectiveness Committee (NCEC).

According to the Department, these are the first NCEC clinical guidelines for cancer and will help to improve the quality, safety and cost-effectiveness of cancer care across Ireland.

Minister Varadkar said: “Survival rates for cancer have improved significantly in recent years and most people who get cancer now survive it. However, our objective is to be in the top tier of developed countries for survival. The National Cancer Control Programme has played a key role in improving cancer care in Ireland. Nonetheless, cancer is still the second leading cause of death in Ireland and remains a major challenge.

“I recently set up a Cancer Strategy Steering Group to advise the Department on developing the next National Cancer Strategy, which will apply from 2016. This launch of the breast and prostate guidelines is further proof of the progress being made in cancer services.”

The guidelines are designed to prevent variations in practice and are based on the best research evidence and on clinical expertise.

Minister Varadkar acknowledged the work of NCEC in advancing patient safety and quality, and the Irish clinical effectiveness agenda, under the chairmanship of Prof Hilary Humphreys. He also congratulated the NCCP on this important contribution to evidence-based cancer care.

Dr Jerome Coffey, Interim Director of the NCCP, underlined the commitment and expertise of the multi-disciplinary cancer teams in developing the guidelines.

Please refer to for further information on these two guidelines.

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