News

Can the law help cure cancer?


10 June 2010

Cancer is the leading cause of disease burden in Australia (19.4 percent in 2003), and few families have not been touched by it. But the crucial legal factors involved in cancer treatment and prevention - from controlling the manufacture of risk factors like cigarettes and alcohol, to the legal restrictions on access to cancer treatment medicines - are often overlooked.

For the next two days, the Sydney Law School in conjunction with the International Union Against Cancer, is hosting a conference that draws attention to the role of law and regulation in a comprehensive response to the prevention and treatment of cancer, both in the Australian community and globally.

The conference will open today at 6pm with a free keynote oration, supported by the both the Sydney Law School and Sydney Medical School and delivered by Emeritus Professor Robert Beaglehole, University of Auckland and Co-director, International Public Health Consultants.

Professor Beaglehole's oration, Preventing Cancer, Promoting Global Health and Development, will tackle many of the big legal issues affecting cancer treatment and prevention. It will then be followed by a response from David Hill AO, Director of the Cancer Council Victoria and President of the International Union Against Cancer.

The conference itself will take place 9am - 4.30pm, Friday 11 June and will be the forum for the following presentations from local and international leaders in the fields of law, medicine, human rights and cancer prevention:

  • The Framework Convention on Tobacco Control: A Beacon for One Risk Factor: Can it Light the Way for Others?
  • Legal Interventions to Promote Healthy Eating and Prevent Obesity
  • Alcohol Control: Can We Get Serious?
  • A Framework for Making Sense of Law and Cancer
  • Implications of the World Trade Organization in Combating Non-Communicable Diseases
  • Law, Human Rights and Cancer: Avoiding Platitudes?
  • Legal and Regulatory Barriers to Advancing Cancer Treatment
  • Access to Medicines for Cancer Treatment: Some Implications of International Law
  • Dying From Cancer: The Role of Law at the End of Life: The Risks of Under and Over-regulation for Cancer Patients

Media enquiries: Stephanie Whitelock, 9351 2261, 0401 711 361, stephanie.whitelock@sydney.edu.au