Cancer is a major Chronic Disease and a leading cause of death around the world. In 2005 around 7.6 million people died of cancer – 13% of the 58 million deaths worldwide. However the reduction of Cancer and Chronic Diseases is not included in the Millennium Development Goals.
On the 4th of February 2008, the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations – IFMSA, the voice of Medical Students worldwide, joins with the International Union Against Cancer and the World Health Organization to promote ways to ease the major public health problem: Cancer.
There are more than 100 types of cancers, affecting any part of the body. A third of cancers could be cured if it’s detected early and treated adequately. It is estimated that 84 million people will die of cancer between 2005 and 2015 without intervention. However, 40% of cancer could be prevented, mainly by not consuming tobacco, having a healthy diet, being physically active and preventing infectious diseases that may cause cancer.
The Standing Committee on Public Health (SCOPH) is the organ of IFMSA which deals with all kinds of public health issues, and the way that IFMSA formulates, implements and evaluates health and social policies and projects. The Standing Committee on Reproductive Health, incl. AIDS (SCORA) is the organ of IFMSA which deals with reproductive health. Through SCOPH and SCORA, IFMSA calls public health aware medical students worldwide to contribute with their work for the prevention of cancer and for the raising of the quality of life for cancer patients.
The Tobacco Initiative Project, Chronic Diseases Workshops and Theme Weeks for Cancer that are organized regularly, on international, regional and local level, are just a few of IFMSA Public Health activities against Cancer during the last years.
Bearing in mind our opportunities and responsibilities to serve people’s health, we, the IFMSA future health professionals, strongly commit ourselves in the Global Public Health fight for the prevention of non healthy behaviors and chronic infections that cause cancer.
IFMSA is one of the largest student organizations in the world with over one million members in over 100 countries worldwide and is recognized as the international voice of medical students around the globe. IFMSA has been in official relations with the WHO since 1969 and is partnered with numerous organizations including both UN Agencies and other student organizations. IFMSA’s activities include over 8,000 medical student exchanges a year and a wealth of studentled projects which fall into four main fields of interest: public health, medical education, human rights and peace, and reproductive health including HIV/AIDS.
On Behalf of the IFMSA Team of Officials 2007 – 2008