World Cancer Day

Date: 4 February 2016

Place: Global

World Cancer Day, organized by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) and celebrated each year on 4 February, is an opportunity to rally the international community to end the injustice of preventable suffering from cancer.

With the recent adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a bold yet achievable target of ensuring healthy lives and promoting well-being for all at all ages has been set. To reach the SDG target of reducing premature mortality from noncommunicable diseases including cancer by one-third by 2030, governments, NGOs, and all cancer advocates must be mobilized to collective action.

The theme of World Cancer Day 2016 is “We can, I can” and highlights the need for multisectoral participation. WHO has provided guidance on how to address the global cancer burden through comprehensive cancer control, founded on global coordination and strong health systems. The Organization has helped lead engagement of partner UN agencies and entities, such as the UN Interagency Taskforce on Cervical Cancer, and recognizes that collaboration can produce a stronger response against this disease that needless claims the lives of millions around the world each year.

Improving access to lifesaving cancer treatment and palliative care is also fundamental to achieve the SDGs. The expansion of WHO Model List of Essential Medicines in 2015 highlights the value of collaborative action, ensuring medicines are not only available but also accessible. Comprehensive cancer control requires global participation and commitment. On World Cancer Day, WHO acknowledges the countless lives touched by cancer and is working toward a future of healthy lives for all.

Related links

UN Secretary-General's message on World Cancer Day 2016