Alcohol drinking has long been known to cause cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, oesophagus, and liver (IARC Monographs Volume 44, 1988). The addition of breast cancer and colorectal cancer, two of the most common cancers worldwide, to this list indicates that the burden of cancer attributable to alcohol consumption is higher than previously thought. "The scientific evidence relating alcohol drinking to an increased risk of cancer continues to grow as does the contribution of alcohol drinking to the global cancer burden. (Read the entire Press Release from the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) HERE)

WHO IARC also reports that "nearly 2 billion adults worldwide are estimated to consume alcoholic beverages regularly, with an average daily consumption of 13 g of ethanol (about one drink). Alcohol consumption has already been shown to cause cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, oesophagus, colorectum, liver and female breast; there is now also some evidence for cancer of the pancreas. The relative risk of breast cancer increases with increasing alcohol intake by about 10% per 10g/day." (Source: IARC)


alcoholandcancer website

The activities of the Association of European Cancer Leagues's activities in the area of alcohol and cancer are mainly in collaboration with Eurocare, the European Alcohol Policy Alliance.  ECL is a founding member of the European Alcohol and Health Forum and has a shared commitment with Eurocare.  ECL's commitment into the Alcohol and Health Forum has not been updated this year, due to ECL's joining the other health NGOs in resigning from the Forum. The Press Release on 3 June from Eurocare summarises this group resignation.

See the summary document on our commiment into the Forum here.



EUROPEAN CODE AGAINST CANCER - Fourth Edition 2014 (newest)
European Code Against Cancer Logo Coloured


The European Code Against Cancer was developed with EU funds by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)  Download in PDF.


Events on the European Code against Cancer

1.Do not smoke. Do not use any form of tobacco.


2.Make your home smoke-free. Support smoke-free policies in your workplace.


3.Take action to be a healthy body weight.


4.Be physically active in everyday life. Limit the time you spend sitting.


5.Have a healthy diet:

  • Eat plenty of whole grains, pulses, vegetables and fruits.
  • Limit high-calorie foods (foods high in sugar or fat) and avoid sugary drinks.
  • Avoid processed meat; limit red meat and foods high in salt.


6.If you drink alcohol of any type, limit your intake.

Not drinking alcohol is better for cancer prevention.


7.Avoid too much sun, especially for children. Use sun protection. Do not use sunbeds.


8.In the workplace, protect yourself against cancer-causing substances by following health 


9.Find out if you are exposed to radiation from naturally high radon levels in your home.
    Take action to reduce high radon levels.


10.For women:


11.Ensure your children take part in vaccination programmes for:


12.Take part in organised cancer screening programmes for:


The European Code Against Cancer focuses on actions that individual citizens can take to help prevent cancer.

Successful cancer prevention requires these individual actions to be supported by governmental policies and actions.

Find out more about the European Code Against Cancer at  and at

The ECL ECToH Young Professional Award is to recognize and support newer careerist professionals that have advanced tobacco control in areas of research, advocacy, policy and practice. The award is granted to participants judged on the quality of the abstracts and their CVs submitted to the conference.

The winner will be presented with the ECL/ECToH Young Professional Award in Porto by the President of the Association of European Cancer Leagues (ECL), Dr Sakari Karjalainen.

1st Prize:  travel grant up to €3.000 to attend the next WCToH congress in Capetown, South Africa in March 2018 (travel, accommodation, etc.) in order to present his/her work and to maintain a network at global level.  This travel grant is provided by the Cancer Society of Finland.

2nd Prize:  €600 ECL subsidy for attending the 2017 ECToH.

3rd Prize:  €400 ECL subsidy for attending the 2017 ECToH.

An award winning ceremony will take place during in Porto.


Criteria for application

DEADLINE: 26 January 2017


• Age 35 years or younger at the time of the application deadline;

• Presently active in tobacco control including research, advocacy, policy or practice;

• Abstract has been submitted to ECToH 2017;

• Never been affiliated with the tobacco industry, directly or indirectly

Applications must include the following and submitted to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 26 January 2017:

1) motivation letter

2) CV

3) submitted abstract to ECToH 2017



The applications are reviewed by selected ECToH committee members, and suggestions for nominations are sent to the ECL board, who votes on the winners.

Criteria for evaluation

• Efforts will be given to recognize individuals working (either paid or volunteer) from WHO EURO Member States;

• In the abstract submitted awardees will have contributed to advancing tobacco control in the following ways:

  • Contributing to the advancement of the WHO-FCTC either in their country, in Europe or globally;
  • Planning, implementing and evaluating innovative research in the area of tobacco control;
  • Advocacy activity within their country, in Europe or globally;
  • Advancing healthy policy development;
  • Developing and/or implementing innovative and functional tobacco cessation methods and strategies and/or prevention initiatives;
  • Knowledge-transfer efforts to translate tobacco control research to practice.
More information in the attached file, or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


ECL has the permanent responsibility of organising the European Conferences on Tobacco or Health (ECToH), which take place every two to three years and hosted by an ECL member in Europe.


6th ECToH: the 6th European Conference on Tobacco or Health took place in 2014 in Istanbul, Turkey.
It was hosted by the Turkish Association for Cancer Research and Control, in collaboration with the National Coalition Against Smoking of Turkey.




More tobacco control resources are provided within each category:

European Conferences on Tobacco or Health (ECToH) and ECToH website

Tobacco Control Campaign Workshops





(All our MAC events are free but registration is required for security purposes into the European Parliament, 60 rue Wiertz, Brussels, Belgium)  

Click HERE for directions and other practical information.

What is the MEPs Against Cancer (MAC) group at the European Parliament?


Find our more about our upcoming and past meetings below:

The next official conference for the 2013 European Week Against Cancer will take place in Dublin, hosted by the Irish Cancer Society, on 29-30 May.


Background:  ECL launched the European Week Against Cancer (25-31 May) with an event on 25 May at the Committee of the Regions in Brussels.  Keynotes were made by President of the European Council Mr Herman VAN ROMPUY, Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy Mr John DALLI, and CoR NAT Commission Acting Chair Mr Michael COHEN.


Presentations from the "Launch Conference:  Highlight on Healthy Lifestyles" can be dowloaded here:




Official Conference for the European Week Against Cancer:  29 May to 30 May, Dublin, Ireland!






In the spirit of the European Week Against Cancer, we organised flashmob events on in major European cities, to encourage youth involvement in the dissemination of the European Code against Cancer (



The Patient Support Working Group has been active in ECL since 2007 and is currently made up of participants from the Faroe Islands to Turkey and Ireland to Italy.

The group and subgroups are chaired by volunteers from our member leagues and the ECL secretariat plays a supporting role in organising meetings, linking members with the relevant EU institutions and sharing health policy information.
Supporting patients, especially via the Patient Support Working Group (PSWG), is one of the most important areas of work for ECL!

The Patient Support Working Group (PSWG) is currently led by Liz Atkinson of Cancer Focus Northern Ireland and supported by Board member Roisin Foster of Cancer Focus Northern Ireland.


Current areas of work for the Patient Support Working Group are:

1. Employment and cancer patients

2. Access to Financial Services

3. Psychosocial Screening and Support

4. Monitoring trends in Palliative Care

5. Rehabilitation (see our Rehabilitation atlas here)


The Patient Support Working Group meets twice a year with regular email and teleconferencing contact in between. Lower-income leagues are subsidised by ECL to attend all meetings.

For more information about the next meetings and membership please contact the ECL secretariat (PSWG (at)





This Quick Start Guide will provide you detailed information about each step you need to take in order to get your site look like JSN Epic demo site. It is assumed that you have already installed the latest Joomla! 1.0 with sample content and downloaded JSN Epic PRO package.

This collection of tutorials is designed for JSN Epic PRO version and many features discussed here are NOT available in free version. For more information about the difference between free and PRO version please visit section Features of this site.

The PDF version of this tutorial is included in JSN Epic PRO download package for convenient references.

ECL operates in accordance with the following transparency policy in its activities in order to ensure the highest level of ethical standards and conduct:

ECL relies mainly on its member organisations to fund activities, services and the running of the Secretariat. In order to further develop its work, ECL welcomes support from individuals and organisations who wish to help in its mission. Should you wish to do so, donations can be made to:

Association of European Cancer Leagues, 

Chaussée de Louvain, 479, B-1030 Brussels, Belgium

Bani: Fortis, Place Meiser, 9, B1030 Bruxelles, Belgium

Account number: 001-4405805-44

IBAN: BE55 001 440580544


Industry funding is restricted to labelled activities and projects. We do not accept any support from the tobacco industry, or any other companies who produce products that are deemed harmful to health.

ECL has a transparent accounting policy. ECL accounts are reviewed by an independent auditor on a yearly basis, and are available upon request. ECL budget, income and expenditure are submitted for approval by our members via the General Assembly each year. 

National Cancer Control Prorgramme Resources:


European Guide for Quality National Cancer Control Programmes:  a main deliverable of the work in the just-ended EU Joint Action European Partnership Action Against Cancer

National cancer control plans for all regions and countries worldwide: database provided by UICC's International Cancer Control Partnership.


Toolkit for Civil Society Organisations in National Cancer Control Planning



Here you will find answers to some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

 Joint Action on the Development of the European Guide on Quality Improvement in Comprehensive Cancer Control

cancon logo horizontal RGB SMALL


Briefing of previous CanCon meetings


 European Guide on Quality Improvement in Comprehensive Cancer Control (CANCON - 2014-2017)

The EU keeps cancer on its agenda with the Joint Action 2014-2017 "Development of the European Guide on Quality Improvement in Comprehensive Cancer Control" ("CanCon"). It is again led by the National Institute of Public Health Slovenia and as with EPAAC, CANCON's actions are toward achieving the goal of reducing cancer incidence by 15% by 2020:

1) by identifying key elements and quality standards for comprehensive cancer control in Europe and preparing an evidence-based European guide on quality improvement in comprehensive cancer control; and

2) by facilitating cooperation and exchange of best practice between EU countries, to identify and define key elements to ensure optimal, comprehensive cancer care. Its core technical areas of work are in the following areas:

- Work package 4: Guide Coordination
- Work package 5: Platform for Member States' cooperation
- Work package 6: Integrated cancer care
- Work package 7: Community-level cancer control
- Work package 8: Survivorship & Rehabilitation
- Work package 9: Screening

ECL member Cancer Society of Finland is responsible for the horizontal work package on dissemination (Work Package 2), led by its Secretary General Sakari Karjalainen. ECL is the Cancer Society's Associated Partner for dissemination at the European level. ECL will organize policy conferences annually to inform policy makers, health professionals, and NGOs on the status of CANCON. The first CANCON Policy Conference is planned for Autumn of 2014, and subsequent Policy Conferences during the European Week Against Cancer end of May in 2015 and 2016.

More information on CANCON is available on the ECL website and on the Cancer Society of Finland's CANCON section


Select a news topic from the list below, then select a news article to read.





Both medical and technological developments have led to the increased provision of cancer medicines on the market. These improved and advanced treatments make it possible for cancer patients to survive or live longer with a better quality of life. Unfortunately, the number of people diagnosed with cancer is rising every year. The combination of increased cancer incidence in the population and new technologically advanced cancer medicines results in a situation where the total cost of cancer is rising which puts an unprecedented demand on healthcare budgets and/or makes treatment unaffordable for many cancer patients. There is a growing risk that affordability or pricing of the medication will become a deciding factor in a patient’s cancer treatment in the hospital or in the doctor’s office. This leads to instability and unpredictability; which is particularly undesirable to a patient who has received a cancer diagnosis. A political and social discussion must be held and as a result policy must be developed in order to ensure equal and affordable access to cancer medicines. Patients must be able to rely on receiving the best possible treatment to match their medical needs and optimise their potential for beating their disease.


New cancer medicines offer new perspectives for patients with diseases that could hardly be treated or cured in the past. However, with these advanced cancer medicines come dilemmas concerning the extremely high cost and a rising number of cancer patients. Measures that are currently taken to guarantee the accessibility of new medicines and to limit their cost are no longer sufficient.

The sustainability of health care systems is also at stake. In our opinion, the pharmaceutical industry has broken the contract with society when setting exorbitant prices for new cancer medicines. Decisions related to pricing and reimbursement of cancer medicines are primarily the responsibility of national governments. Since the problem of access and affordability exists in many parts of Europe and beyond, it is necessary to join forces on an international level, exchange information and best practices and look for possible common solutions.

To assure the accessibility of innovative cancer medicines for all cancer patients, the countries of this task force have decided to join forces. This task force that will actively address the problems that threaten the accessibility of cancer medicines in an international setting, starting in Europe. We will work towards the following goals:


Our ultimate goal is to achieve equal access to medicines for all cancer patients in Europe.

Goal 1: The cancer societies of this task force state that all effective and innovative cancer treatments now and in the future should be accessible to patients. Patients cannot suffer from a

dysfunctional system and/or unsustainable financial and pricing arrangements in the prescription of medicines.

Goal 2: Medicine prices should be sustainable and proportionate to real cost of research and development and added therapeutic value. In that respect an open, transparent and continuous dialogue with the pharmaceutical industry is needed. Knowledge and information must be shared internationally and co-operation must be sought after.

Goal 3: Cancer medicines that have a distinctive therapeutic added value should reach patients in a timely manner, in the safest way and at affordable prices. The patients should be fully informed of the possible benefits and harms.

Goal 4: Cancer societies in Europe should work together to get and keep this issue on the national and European agendas of politicians, policy makers and the pharmaceutical industry

Goal 5: Patients should at all times be involved in the decision-making process (eg. joint decision making concerning policies as well as treatment process).

Signatories to this declaration

 A2M signatories May16



1: ECL will form a task force to formulate a short term, medium term and long term agenda. In accordance with the by-laws of ECL, members of this task force will be ECL member leagues.

2: ECL will hold the secretariat of this task force that will convene twice a year.A Chair and Vice Chair of the group will be appointed.   

3: ECL will hold prime responsibility on behalf of the task force for influencing policy at the European level.  

4: The member cancer societies will exchange national strategies, good practices and results.

5: The member cancer societies will strive for continuous agenda setting through advocacy to support national government positions that strive for improvements in the field of expensive cancer medicines.

6: All parties will monitor national policy developments which aim to facilitate alternative (high) potential new business models and medical innovation models for a sustainable system in which patients are able to rely on receiving the best possible treatment.  

The Dutch Cancer Society accepted to be the first chair of this ECL Task Force.

For more information, contact Eveline Scheres (EScheres(at), who represents the Dutch Cancer Society in this role.

 The Association of European Cancer Leagues implements activities which receive financial support from the European Commission under an Operating Grant from the European Union's Health Programme (2014-2020). The views expressed on our website and reports do not necessarily reflect the official views of the EU institutions.
EU flag and co-funded by health programme LOGO  




The text of this webpage is available for modification and reuse under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Unported License and the GNU Free Documentation License (unversioned, with no invariant sections, front-cover texts, or back-cover texts).


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