International Cancer Expert visits New Zealand

21-Dec-2017 2:56 PM

The World Health Organisation’s Dr Isabelle Soerjomataram, Deputy Head, Section of Cancer Surveillance, International Agency for Research on Cancer has been attending meetings in New Zealand as part of an innovative collaboration called the International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership (ICBP).

The ICBP joins clinicians, policy-makers, researchers and cancer data experts in order to measure international differences in cancer survival and to determine what factors may be causing these differences.
The Cancer Society is New Zealand’s representative on the ICBP. Based in France, over the next two days Dr Soerjomataram is meeting with the Cancer Society of New Zealand, the Ministry of Health, researchers and other academics in order to discuss ongoing projects, research, cancer control work as well as potential future collaborations.
“Cancer doesn’t rest for the holidays which means that we can’t either” says Mike Kernaghan, Cancer Society Chief Executive.
“We hope by working internationally, we can advance cancer outcome for kiwis, this is why we have hosted Dr Soerjomataram during her stay in New Zealand just before Christmas” noted Kernaghan.
The ICBP launched SURVMARK-2, a project led by the World Health Organisation to produce high impact cancer survival, incidence and mortality trends from the past 20 years. The project covers eight types of cancer, including oesophagus, stomach, colon, rectum, liver, pancreas, lung and ovary cancer. The ICBP includes 22 jurisdictions across 8 high-income countries over 3 continents.  


Isabelle Soerjomataram MD, PhD
Deputy Head, Section of Cancer Surveillance, International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)
Isabelle Soerjomataram is a medical epidemiologist with a special interest in causes, and prevention of cancer. She received her medical degree from the University of Indonesia in 2001. Following a PhD in cancer epidemiology (2007) at the Public Health department at Erasmus Medical Centre in Rotterdam, she went to the Harvard School of Public Health as a fellow in Global Health to work on the designing the disability-adjusted life years estimation for cancer globally. She took a position at IARC in 2011 where she is currently assessing international variation of the cancer burden using mainly population-based datasets.
In addition to her research activities, she is (co) coordinating several large projects funded by various institutions including the Cancer Research UK, WCRF, and the National Cancer Institute in France. One seminal project involving over than 60 experts in France, she coordinates the estimation of the proportion of cancer attributable to all known lifestyle and environmental risk factors in France. More internationally she is leading the global estimation of attributable fraction for cancers related tobacco smoking, alcohol, obesity and also Solar UV radiation. Other projects that she leads or coleads are cancer survival projects, in high-income and also low-and middle income settings assessing the effectiveness of the local health system as well as influence of major risk factors such as obesity.

Topic: General News

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