The cancer committee of the Cyprus patient associations’ federation (Osak) on Tuesday urged for the inclusion of a National Cancer Institute in the health ministry’s 2024 budget.

“The need for the institute to be included in the budget is evident due to the continual rise in cancer rates in Cyprus,” the committee, comprised of 10 organisations representing cancer patients and patient groups, said in a statement.

“Cancer currently stands as the second leading cause of death, and the perspectives offer little optimism.”

The statement highlighted that a National Cancer Institute would serve as the scientific body of expertise in cancer-related matters, tasked with organising and coordinating all activities concerning cancer management in Cyprus.

The statement also added that the institute would implement a National Cancer Strategy in Cyprus, with specific plans and timelines.

“Implementing a strategy would align the actions of all entities to determine priorities aimed at reducing incidents and providing holistic care and services to patients,” Osak said.