The European Commission Initiative on Breast Cancer (ECIBC) is in charge of putting in place, with the Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) as the coordinator, a plan of the European Commission to introduce quality to the breast cancer screening and treatment procedures. Therefore, the first 2015 ECIBC Plenary “Improving breast cancer screening, diagnosis and care in Europe“ was held in the period between 9th and 11th December 2015 in Lago Maggore, Italy, in order to inform the representatives of the EU countries and interested parties about the project progress.
Topics covered during the meeting pertained to the activities to complete the following project tasks:
• Development of the new version of the European guidelines for breast cancer screening and diagnosis (European Guidelines for Screening and Diagnosis in Breast Cancer)
• Development of a European Quality Assurance Scheme for Breast Cancer Services to set common quality and safety requirements for person-centred breast cancer services in Europe. The scheme will cover all the processes of breast cancer care (screening, diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation & supportive care, follow-up & survivorship care and palliative care) and will be underpinned by the accreditation legal framework (Regulation (EC) No. 765/2008).
The meeting was attended by representatives of the national accreditation bodies (NABs), that are expected to underpin the quality system development in this field, experts in various fields that participate in breast cancer screening and treatment (radiologists, oncologists, psychologists, etc.), representatives of other projects running in this field, and representatives of interested parties (EU organisations, regulatory bodies, patients). Ljubinka Gligić PhD (Accreditation Body of Serbia, ATS), and Verica Jovanović MD (Kancelarija za skrining raka Instituta za javno zdravlje Srbije “Dr Milan Jovanović Batut“, Beograd) attended the meeting on behalf of the Republic of Serbia.
Representatives of the national accreditation bodies from EU and accession countries presented their accreditation systems in the light of breast cancer screening, diagnosis and treatment. Ljubinka Gligić PhD presented the ATS structure and activities and situation relating to accreditation/certification of institutions providing breast cancer services in Serbia. It was concluded that ATS had the capacities to underpin the quality system development in breast cancer field.
NABs will use harmonised ISO standards for accreditation of conformity assessment bodies (CABs) performing these activities in order to attain harmonised approach when granting accreditation to CABs providing healthcare in breast cancer field.
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