Accelerating knowledge to action: the pan-Canadian cancer control strategy

L. Fairclough, J. Hill, H. Bryant, L. Kitchen-Clarke



In 2006, the federal government committed funding of $250 million over 5 years for the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer Corporation to begin implementation of the Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control (cscc). The Partnership was established as a not-for-profit corporation designed to work actively with a broad range of stakeholders and organizations that had been engaged in the development of the cscc and with the public more broadly. A policy experiment unto itself, the Partnership was the first disease-based organization funded at the federal level outside of government. It was charged with a mandate to enable transfer of knowledge and to catalyze coordinated and accelerated action across the country to reduce the burden of cancer.


Implementation has involved establishing shared goals, objectives, and plans with participating partners. Knowledge management—incorporating pan-Canadian approaches to the identification of content, processes, technology, and culture change—was used to enable that work across the federated health care delivery system. Evaluation of the organization through independent review, the ability to achieve initiative-level targets by 2012, and progress measured using indicators of system performance was used to examine the effectiveness of the strategy and approach overall.

Discussion and Conclusions

Evaluation findings support the conclusions that Canada has made progress in achieving immediate outcomes (achievable in <5 years) associated with advancing its cancer control goals and that there is evidence that, with sustained effort, those goals
will translate into a long-term (>25 years) impact on cancer. The mechanism of funding the Partnership to develop collaboration among stakeholders in cancer control to achieve coordinated action has been possible and has been enabled through the Partnership’s knowledge-to-action mandate. Opportunities are available to further engage and clarify the roles of stakeholders in action, to clearly define outcomes, and to further quantify the economic benefits that have resulted from a coordinated approach. With the ongoing funding commitment to support coordinated action within a federated environment of health care delivery, there is opportunity to reduce the impact that cancer may have in the long term in Canada.

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ISSN: 1198-0052 (Print) ISSN: 1718-7729 (Online)