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Economics the key to improving cancer outcomes

Wednesday 5 July, 2017

One of Australia's largest and most prestigious teams of health economists have established an Australian-first Economics of Cancer Program to improve cancer prevention and health delivery for cancer patients.

Cancer Council Victoria and Deakin Health Economics will use the program to identify and prioritise research and interventions to improve screening, prevention or treatment for cancer, along with psychosocial and other supports for patients.

Co-Head of Deakin Health Economics Professor Rob Carter said the main aims of the program are to identify cost-effective policies that will improve the health of the community, find cost offsets in the health sector and identify opportunities to reduce inequality in cancer outcomes.

Cancer Council Victoria CEO Todd Harper said the program aligns with the organisation's five year strategic plan and will create opportunities with funders and policy makers to improve the lives of those affected by cancer.

"Cancer economics can identify the greatest returns on our investment of human and financial resources to ensure we develop, implement and evaluate policies and programs that will save direct health system costs, improve productivity, and-most importantly-save lives," he said.

Senior Health Economist, Dr Nikki McCaffrey is working with experts on cancer prevention in areas such as tobacco and obesity, and screening to identify which policies and programs will have the most impact if implemented. Community concerns and the views of stakeholders (funders, policymakers and partners) will also be considered to achieve equity delivery health.

Cancer Council Victoria                    CPHR