Cancer resolution

Adopted at the 70th World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, the 2017 cancer resolution represents a global call for action.

© UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

On 30 May 2017, health leaders from across the world reaffirmed cancer control as a critical health and development priority as they adopted the 2017 cancer resolution, entitled “Cancer prevention and control in the context of an integrated approach at the 70th World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva. 

The resolution draws on targets set out in the Global Action Plan on NCDs and Sustainable Development Goals to help make the case for increasing national action on cancer. Drawing on best practices from across the globe, it identifies 22 priority actions grouped into four key areas, for countries to systematically strengthen cancer services over time. These should be embedded in national cancer control plans that can drive the introduction or scale-up of services, in line with national priorities and also serve as an important platform to coordinate national stakeholders around common goals. Read UICC’s high-level summary of the 2017 cancer resolution.

Critically, the 2017 cancer resolution aligns national cancer control with the growing dialogue on universal health coverage, emphasising the links and opportunities for integration to deliver sustainable cancer care and stronger health systems. Now, the global cancer community is calling for action on the health systems response, specifically, population-based, holistic approaches to programmes and the expansion and scale up of diagnosis, treatment and care services so that no one is left behind.



With a global cancer burden of 19.3m cases in 2020, and that number expected to rise to a projected 24.6m by 2030, collective action is required now to reverse this trend.

"Australia has 3 national cancer screening programmes for breast, cervical and bowel cancer. These programmes are under continuous evaluation to ensure they are responsive to changing evidence and technology. In cervical cancer, Australia has fully implemented HPV vaccination and is set to shift from PAP testing every two years to HPV DNA testing every five years from 2018. I am hopeful that the cancer resolution and the Australian experience will motivate governments to implement evidence-based cancer prevention and screening programmes."

Sanchia Aranda
Chief Executive Officer, Cancer Council Australia, Past President Union for International Cancer Control (UICC)

2017 Cancer Resolution
From global commitment to national action

Cancer Council is Australia’s leading cancer charity working across every aspect of every cancer.  Every day, Cancer Council supports families affected by cancer when they need it most, works with the community to change laws and policies to reduce cancer risks and improve cancer care, empowers Australians to reduce their cancer risk, and funds more world-class cancer research than any other-non government organisation in Australia to reduce the impact of cancer.  Thanks to the support of the Australian public, Cancer Council is getting closer to a cancer free future every minute, every hour, every day.

Founded in 1933 and based in Geneva, UICC has over 1150 member organisations in 172 countries and territories. The membership base includes the world’s major cancer leagues and societies, research institutes, treatment centres, hospitals, ministries of health, public health agencies and patient support groups. UICC’s mission is to both unite and support the cancer community in its efforts to reduce the global cancer burden, promote greater equity and ensure that cancer control remains a priority on the global health and development agenda. 

For more information on the cancer resolution check out the webinar recording below with Dr Julie Torode, who was the Director of Special Projects of UICC at the time. 

 In the meantime, please contact UICC's advocacy team via to find out more about the resolution and how you can support it.

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Union for International Cancer Control (UICC)
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Prof. Jeff Dunn, President of UICC 2022-2024, speaking at the World Cancer Leaders' Summit 2023 in Long Beach, CA, United States in November 2023.

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Last update

Monday 04 September 2023

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