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Home » Bladder Cancer, EU Health, Health

Roche confirms its commitment to address the needs of patients with bladder cancer

Submitted by on 30 Sep 2016 – 17:01

Recognising the need for consolidated focus on bladder cancer patients’ needs, Roche supports an opportunity for broad collaboration engaging professional societies, nurses, patient organisations and various European institutions. Pablo Perez-Moreno, International Medical Director – Oncology and Elzbieta Zawislak, International Health Policy Leader from Roche elaborate on the company’s commitment

Health remains a national competence but European coordination in the fight against cancer has shown that much more can be achieved through coordinated activities. The EU has been effective in supporting EU member states in the development of cancer screening programmes supplemented with guidelines for breast, cervical and colorectal cancer. However, not all cancers have received similar level of attention. Bladder cancer is one of the most common cancers in the western world and the 2nd most frequent malignancy of the urinary tract after prostate cancer, yet it remains outside of health policy priorities.

Raise awareness on bladder cancer in Europe
The awareness of bladder cancer is still low in Europe. Despite its prevalence, specific aspects of the disease are often overlooked. In Roche, we believe that now is the right moment to come out and speak, to ensure that at the European level, bladder cancer discourse is being heard. We are devoted to partner in coordinated efforts to bring bladder cancer higher up the EU agenda in hope of improved treatment outcomes for all bladder cancer patients in Europe.

Act now to improve the situation
Early recognition of symptoms and prevention will play a crucial role in the management of bladder cancer. Healthcare professionals should be taught to identify risk factors and early symptoms so that patients stand a better chance of having access to the right cancer treatment.
Further research is needed to address high mortality among women and work-related risks. With smoking seen as the number one cause of bladder cancer more action is needed to reduce tobacco consumption.

Due to the complexity of the disease, its higher prevalence among an older population and related comorbidities, effective care requires concerted, multidisciplinary approach, integrating the expertise of urologists, oncologists, radiation therapists, imagining experts and nurses.
Until recently, for those people with the advanced disease, prognosis was poor because of the lack of effective treatment options available beyond chemotherapy or radiotherapy. In terminal cases, these treatments are given to relieve symptoms and improve quality of life. Consequently, there is a significant medical need for new treatment options. In Roche, we are committed to exploring treatment solutions to address that need.

In recent years, personalised cancer immunotherapies have been investigated in clinical trials to understand their potential for treating bladder cancer by stimulating a patient’s own immune system to target and kill cancer cells. The aim of personalised cancer immunotherapy (PCI) is to provide individual patients with treatment options that are tailored to their specific needs.

This is an exciting and ever-expanding area of research, which may change how we treat cancer in the future. To date we have been extremely encouraged by the outcomes of our research in this field and believe that cancer immunotherapy may have the potential to drive a paradigm shift in cancer care. Thus far, this class of treatments has shown encouraging results for people diagnosed with bladder cancer.
Recognising the growing need to act, Roche supports an opportunity for broad collaboration engaging professional societies, nurses, patient organisations and various European institutions

About Roche
Roche is a global pioneer in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics focused on advancing science to improve people’s lives.
Roche is the world’s largest biotech company, with truly differentiated medicines in oncology, immunology, infectious diseases, ophthalmology and diseases of the central nervous system. Roche is also the world leader in vitro diagnostics and tissue-based cancer diagnostics, and a frontrunner in diabetes management. The combined strengths of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics under one roof have made Roche the leader in personalised healthcare – a strategy that aims to fit the right treatment to each patient in the best way possible.

Founded in 1896, Roche continues to search for better ways to prevent, diagnose and treat diseases and make a sustainable contribution to society. Twenty-nine medicines developed by Roche are included in the World Health Organization Model Lists of Essential Medicines, among them life-saving antibiotics, antimalarials and cancer medicines