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Europe's Beating Cancer Plan: MNI and SNE call for nutritional care to be an integral part of cancer care


04 Feb 2020


Health & Consumers

The Medical Nutrition International Industry (MNI) and Specialised Nutrition Europe (SNE) welcome the European Commission initiative ‘Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan’ aiming to tackle the second leading cause of mortality in the European Union. MNI and SNE call upon the European Commission to make nutritional interventions an integral part of cancer care in the ‘Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan’.

1 in 3 cancer patients are malnourished. Malnutrition in cancer patients results in poorer health outcomes, such as reduced tolerance to anticancer therapy, higher risk of complications and infections, as well as increased mortality.
Furthermore, malnutrition leads to an increased burden on healthcare resources, including longer hospital stay  and additional costs, estimated to be €17 billion per year in the European Union. Nutritional care should be considered as an integral part of disease management in order to reduce healthcare expenditure.

MNI infographic on cancer outlines why nutritional care is important for cancer patients and provides five recommendations to advance cancer care: 

  • Screen all cancer patients for malnutrition to provide nutritional care in a timely manner
  • Implement existing clinical guidelines on nutritional care for cancer patients
  • Provide equal access to and reimbursement of medical nutrition to cancer patients
  • Establish multidisciplinary teams in oncology, including a dietitian or registered nutritionist
  • Educate healthcare professionals and patient advocates, and inform cancer patients on the importance of a good nutrition status in cancer care

Better nutritional status in cancer patients contributes to improved tolerance to chemotherapy, faster recovery and higher survival rate. MNI & SNE call on the European Commission to take a holistic and multi-disciplinary approach to cancer treatment.

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MNI Infographic: "Cancer care: why nutrition matters"