“Working together to prevent and care for cancer in Africa”

The members of the AORTIC Executive Council met in Somone, Senegal in April 2018, to develop a strategic plan for advocacy, training and research on cancer in Africa.

The Executive Council endorses the World Cancer Declaration adopted in 2013 at The World Cancer Leaders’ Summit, which calls upon government leaders and health policy makers to significantly reduce the global cancer burden, promote greater equality and integrate cancer control into the world health and development agenda.

The Council recognizes the following challenges:

  • That there are approximately 850,000 new cases of cancer in Africa every year and around 600,000 deaths recorded over the same period.
  • That the mortality to incidence ratio of people diagnosed with cancer in Africa averages 73%, which is much higher than the average of 44% achieved in Europe.
  • That by 2030 there will be an estimated 1.4 million new cases of cancer per year in Africa, with a corresponding increase in deaths in the absence of improved cancer control.
  • That numerous African countries do not possess radiotherapy facilities for cancer and that a deficit of over 700 radiotherapy machines exists on the continent.
  • That in some countries there is no cancer therapy available.
  • That in Africa, people with cancer present with late stage disease making treatment or cure impossible and that in as many as 22 countries there may be no palliative care available.
  • That national cancer control plans exist only in a few countries and they are not consistently funded.
  • That there is a general lack of awareness among communities, the health care profession and health care authorities about cancer and that, generally, the health care systems for people living in Africa are weak.

The Council endorsed actions in the following areas:

Cancer Advocacy

  • Continue declaring cancer a significant public health problem in Africa
  • Continue promoting the development and implementation of National Cancer Control Programmes by every Ministry of Health in Africa
  • Continue prioritizing cancer control strategies to “key” cancers that are preventable or curable; incorporate vaccination against preventable cancers such as HPV, HepB into national vaccination programmes; support campaign on tobacco control and promote activities against obesity
  • Continue promoting synergy of efforts by linking and forming partnerships with organisations working toward cancer control

Cancer Care

  • Continue providing and increasing palliative care services
  • Continue increasing access to effective anti-cancer therapies
  • Continue supporting increasing quality of cancer care through development of relevant diagnostic and therapeutic resources, including psycho-oncology, pathology, radiology, surgery, chemotherapy and others

Cancer Education

  • Continue promoting community educational and public health campaigns to the media, government and the general population to improve prevention, early detection and treatment of cancers on the continent
  • Continue developing Cancer Training Programmes for African clinicians, researchers and patient advocates

Cancer Research

  • Continue striving to collect local data and create resource population-based cancer registries everywhere on the continent
  • Continue developing and supporting research to create new knowledge and drive innovation in cancer control


“Working together to prevent and care for cancer in Africa”