The B.C. government is launching a 10-year action plan to improve cancer care in B.C. and putting money towards research to help prevent cancers.
The province is initially spending $440 million to expand cancer-care teams and service hours and introduce revised pay structures.
Provincial officials said this will make B.C. a desirable location for oncologists and cancer-care professionals.
“Nearly every British Columbian has been affected by cancer in some way, through their own diagnosis or that of a family member or friend,” said Premier David Eby in a release.
“With this significant investment in cancer care, we can prevent and detect cancer earlier and improve access to treatment. This will help save lives and improve the quality of life of British Columbians, now and into the future.”
The action plan also includes increased funding towards travel expenses for people living in remote communities that need to go elsewhere for care.
The province is providing a $170 million grant to the BC Cancer Foundation to support research.
“We’re investing in research, technology, and innovation to strengthen cancer care in B.C. and deliver more innovative, evidence-based care for people when and where they need it,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health in a release.
“This action plan will help achieve a cancer-free future for more people, accelerate treatment for patients diagnosed with cancer, and help thousands more survive their cancer diagnosis.”
In 2021, more than 11,000 people died from cancer in B.C. and more than 30,000 people were newly diagnosed.
– with files from Josiah Spyker, My East Kootenay Now staff