Health brings together healthcare and public health professionals in an interdisciplinary working day on the Colon Cancer Strategy
Coinciding with the celebration of World Colon Cancer Day, the Regional Ministry and the Spanish Association Against Cancer have organised the meeting.
The Regional Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs will tomorrow bring together specialists from specialised care, primary care and public health in an interdisciplinary working day on the Colon Cancer Strategy of the Balearic Islands, organised jointly with the Spanish Association Against Cancer.
The conference coincides with World Colon Cancer Day and the expansion of the Colon Cancer Screening Programme in the Son Espases, Son Llàtzer and Manacor hospitals. The development of this programme is a priority for the Regional Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs, given that this is the most common cancer in the Balearic Islands and each year around 850 cases are diagnosed and between 300 and 400 people die from this cause.
The general objective of the workshop is to establish a participatory strategic framework to respond to the needs of people involved in the colon cancer process, and it will also serve to set an agenda of actions for 2022-2024, prioritising objectives and indicators.
It will also address specific aspects such as the role of primary care professionals as informers and recruiters of participants in the screening programme; the incorporation of human and technological resources and the organisation of the circuits, and the involvement of teams from the various levels of care. Dissemination of the Strategy and raising public awareness will also be discussed.
The day is structured in two parts. In the morning, it will have a more technical aspect and will be divided into presentation and debate sessions in which the following will take part, among others: the Director General of Public Health and Participation, Maria Antònia Font; the Director General of Services and Pharmacy, Nacho García; the Director General of the Health Service, Juli Fuster; the coordinator of the Balearic Islands Cancer Strategy, Carmen Sánchez Contador; the coordinator of the Colon and Rectal Cancer Early Detection Programme, Guillem Artigues; the clinical coordinator of the Trials Programme, Guillem Artigues; the coordinator of the Cancer of the Colon and Rectum Early Detection Programme; and the coordinator of the Cancer of the Rectum Early Detection Programme, Guillem Artigues; the clinical coordinator of the Colon Cancer Triage Programme and head of the Digestive System Service at the Hospital Comarcal de Inca, José Reyes; the head of the Oncology Service at the Hospital Universitario Son Espases; Josefa Terrassa; the head of Abdominal Radiology at Son Espases, Elena Usamentiaga; the clinical psychologist at the same centre, Jero Seguí; the head of the Coordinating Centre of the Palliative Care Programme of the Balearic Islands, Mercè Llagostera, and the deputy director of Primary Care, Maite Corredor.
All the sessions will take place in the auditorium of the Hospital Universitario Son Espases and are open to heads of service and all interested professional teams. At the end of the morning, Font and Reyes will present the conclusions.
In the afternoon, the activity will move to the headquarters of the Asociación Española Contra el Cáncer (Spanish Association Against Cancer) and will be more informative. Patient associations linked to cancer are invited to attend.
The Director General of Public Health and Participation, M. Antònia Font; the Director General of Benefits and Pharmacy, Nacho García, and the Primary Care nurse Tolo Villalonga will present the conclusions reached during the morning’s meetings.
Afterwards, José Reyes, also president of the Spanish Association Against Cancer in the Balearic Islands, will present the initiative to promote the implementation of the AECC’s Colon Cancer Prevention Programme in the Balearic Islands.
Expansion of the Screening Programme
This day coincides with the start of the mailing of letters to invite the target population of three new areas – which are those comprising Son Espases University Hospital, Son Llàtzer University Hospital and Manacor Hospital – to participate in the programme, which is developed in collaboration with pharmacies.
The extension of the Programme has been possible thanks to the prior coordination efforts with the different healthcare areas involved in its development, and thanks to a whole series of investments in different healthcare areas, both in material and personnel, in order to provide the necessary means to support the additional workload that the development of the Programme will entail.
Specifically, the Directorate General of Public Health, which carries out all the planning and monitoring of the Programme, the health centres, which collect the samples from patients, and the hospitals, which are responsible for analysing the samples and carrying out any additional diagnostic tests deemed appropriate, have worked closely together. Pharmacies have also been involved, delivering the sample collectors to those who present the document.
In terms of infrastructures, it is worth remembering that in order to promote the programme – which until now was essentially in place at the Hospital Comarcal de Inca – and to extend it to all health sectors, this year the Health Service has invested 882,854 euros in a five-year supply and maintenance contract for digestive endoscopy equipment consisting of endoscopy towers, high-definition video colonoscopes and electrosurgical scalpels. These have already been installed in hospitals on the islands.
The aim of all the coordinated actions is to reach the milestone set by the national strategy of reaching all men and women aged 50 to 69 in the Balearic Islands by 2024. The measure will benefit around 260,300 people.