The Nordic Cancer Union (NCU), established in 1949, is a collaborative body for the cancer societies in the Nordic countries.
The NCU is comprised of six organizations: Danish Cancer Society, Cancer Society of Finland, Icelandic Cancer Society, Norwegian Cancer Society, Swedish Cancer Society and Faroese Cancer Society. The aim of the NCU is collaboration to improve knowledge and understanding of cancer diseases, their effective prevention, treatment and rehabilitation.
The principal role of the NCU is to provide a forum for the national cancer societies in the Nordic countries to meet and exchange relevant information about national and international activities, best practices and future plans.
The members of the Nordic Cancer Union have a common vision: “more life without cancer and the best possible life for those with cancer and their families.” The challenge of today is an increasing number of elderly people and their risk of contracting cancer, combined with the gap in knowledge of important risk factors and population behaviour. The Cancer Societies cannot solve this problem, but they can create a basis for well-founded advocacy through the activities they support, and thus point to societal changes related to health and health care.
Advocacy is thus a major pillar in the NCU strategy alongside collaboration and synergy in research, prevention and care. In addition to providing a forum for information sharing, the NCU funds Nordic cancer research in accordance with the NCU Research Strategy. The NCU has also taken the initiative in common Nordic projects carried out by national cancer societies and different strategic projects.
The NCU strategy is formed taking account of the similarities between the Nordic populations, totalling more than 25 million people. The Nordic populations live in relatively affluent and public-service-based environments with effective high-quality monitoring. Using this situation intelligently can significantly contribute to the global fight against cancer.
This strategy is a reflection of the shared priorities of the national cancer societies in the Nordic countries. It is grounded in the NCU statutes, the NCU strategy for the years 2010-15, the NCU research strategy 2014 and the NCU proposal to the Nordic Council of Ministers on future collaboration. The strategy will provide guidance for the NCU in establishing joint projects and allocation of NCU funds, currently one million euro each year.
There are five main points in this strategy, for each of which a number of implementation approaches are described. Targets will be developed as needed during the three-year period to which the strategy applies.