Rare Cancers Asia (RCA) is as a multi-stakeholder partnership, including all groups with an interest in improving the lives of rare cancers patients in the Asia-Pacific Region. Its objective is to create a bridge between Asia and Europe, where the rare cancers community may discuss the challenges; for them to learn from each other on tackling all formidable challenges faced by rare cancers patients. RCA aims to develop a platform catering to the needs of the Asia-Pacific community, and it is designed to use the successful 13-year-old partnership, Rare Cancers Europe, as basis.
RCA provides a platform, to discuss the challenges faced by rare cancer patients, physicians, researchers, industry & other relevant stakeholders from the vast Asia-Pacific region. It is indeed based on the challenges faced by the community, and its activities are focused on 3 pillars:
- Education: Specific projects aimed to improve medical and patient education about rare cancers in the Region, building on tools already available in Asia and Europe and working out new instruments;
- Research: Dedicated research efforts on rare cancers, including research efforts shared between Asia and Europe;
- Epidemiology: Assess the epidemiology of rare cancer cases in the region by generating data and sharing them with Europe
RCA is not a registered entity or organisation and thus there are no membership dues, it is an informal entity, coordinated by ESMO, which provides assistance to RCA in terms of project management and coordination.
Groups that are welcome to join:
- Patient advocacy groups
- Research institutions and collaborative groups
- Scientific and professional societies
- Educational providers
- Public health efforts (e.g. registries)
Industry (both as partners and supporters and sponsors of projects)
Paolo G. Casali, co-founder of both ESMO-led rare cancers initiatives commented on the launch of RCA:
“Rare Cancers Asia aims to become the preferred platform for discussing and proposing solutions to the many challenges faced by rare cancer patients, physicians, researchers, industry and other stakeholders in the Asia-Pacific region. Designed to work in partnership with Rare Cancers Europe, RCA will build bridges between Asia and Europe, and be of help to both rare cancer patient communities.”
“By furthering our global understanding of these diseases and allowing best practices to be shared more widely across both regions, Rare Cancers Asia will ultimately contribute to improving care for patients who urgently need it.”
By collaborating and sharing experiences with Rare Cancers Europe, its 13-year-old European counterpart, Rare Cancers Asia will benefit from the resources offered by European Reference Networks (ERNs) on rare cancers such as EURACAN.