World Cancer Day – EU4Health projects are working to improve the quality of cancer screening programmes and optimise cancer trainings across Europe

While cancer survival rates have significantly increased thanks to advances in prevention, early detection, diagnosis and treatment, the number of people with a history of cancer in the EU is growing annually and is now estimated at over 12 million. Fortunately, cancers can be detected in time thanks to screening programmes. Moreover, cancer management plays an important role in supporting cancer patients and survivors along their recovery journey.

On World Cancer Day, discover two projects funded under EU4Health as part of Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan, one focusing on improving the quality of cancer screening programmes in Europe and another on developing optimised cancer trainings to ensure better patient care.


Running until the end of February 2024, the CanScreen-ECIS project aims to develop and pilot a new cancer screening data management system to be integrated into the European Cancer Information System (ECIS). The project is being conducted by a consortium of seven partners under the leadership of IARC and in collaboration with other European experts working on cancer screening data collection projects, the second European Screening Report (EUSR) and EU-TOPIA.

Up to now, the CanScreen-ECIS project has revised the key performance indicators (KPI) for breast, cervical colorectal and lung cancer screening programmes in the EU to:

  • Facilitate comparisons between the different organisational settings of screening programmes;
  • Enable the collection of data on testing conducted outside the established programmes;
  • Allow the monitoring system to identify & quantify the information on inequalities;
  • Address new screening approaches and potential emerging cancer sites for future considerations.

A data submission warehouse was also created, which will enable the upgraded European Cancer Information System to start collecting indicators to monitor and assess cancer screening programmes regularly at national and sub-national levels. By defining the various KPIs to monitor cancer screening programmes, the project also aims to support the flagship initiative 4 , putting forward a new EU-supported Cancer Screening Scheme.


The INTERACT-EUROPE project brought together 33 partners from 17 countries with the objective of developing a European inter-specialty cancer training programme by November 2023 to foster a patient-centric approach to quality cancer care within a multidisciplinary framework.

Healthcare professional organisations involved in the project developed a curriculum that identified valuable inter-specialty competencies across surgical, medical, radiation, nursing, radiology and oncology. In addition to this, the project team explored the use of new technologies, such as automatic translation technology, and set out a long-term vision for inter-speciality cancer training.

The follow-up project, INTERACT-EUROPE 100 started in December 2023 and aims to implement inter-specialty cancer training in 100 centres across Europe.

Source: European Commission | European Health and Digital Executive Agency (HaDEA) (