World Cancer Day every 4 February is the global uniting initiative led by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC). By raising worldwide awareness, improving education and catalysing personal, collective and government action, we’re working together to reimagine a world where millions of preventable cancer deaths are saved and access to life-saving cancer treatment and care is equal for all – no matter who you are or where you live.
Created in 2000, World Cancer Day has grown into a positive movement for everyone, everywhere to unite under one voice to face one of our greatest challenges in history.
Each year, hundreds of activities and events take place around the world, gathering communities, organisations and individuals in schools, businesses, hospitals, marketplaces, parks, community halls, places of worship – in the streets and online – acting as a powerful reminder that we all have a role to play in reducing the global impact of cancer.
What happens when we act?
More than one third of cancer cases can be prevented. Another third can be cured if detected early and treated properly.
By implementing resource-appropriate strategies on prevention, early detection and treatment, we can save up to 3.7 million lives every year.
Today, we know more about cancer than ever before.
Through investing in research and innovation, we have witnessed extraordinary breakthroughs in medicine, diagnostics, and scientific knowledge.
The more we know, the more progress we can make in reducing risk factors, increasing prevention and improving cancer diagnosis, prevention, treatment, and care.
In recent years, the United Nations, the World Health Organization and other UN agencies have recognised the urgent need for a global commitment.
When leaders speak up and take action we give ourselves a chance to make history and to move towards a world without cancer.
Today, more than half (65%) of cancer deaths are happening in the least developed parts of the world. Even if you live in a higher income country, inequities still exist among lower-income, indigenous, immigrant, refugee and rural communities.
Equal access to cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care can save lives.
Through raising the public and political literacy and understanding around cancer, we reduce fear, increase understanding, dispel myths and misconceptions, and change behaviours and attitudes.
This year is a reminder of the enduring power of cooperation and collective action. When we choose to come together, we can achieve what we all wish for: a healthier, brighter world without cancer. Together, all of our actions matter. This World Cancer Day, who are you and what will you do?