Reflections from EAPM 2017 where MErCuRIC PPI was Highlighted

The 1st European Alliance for Personalised Medicine (EAPM) Congress was held in Belfast in November 2017 where Margaret Grayson presented MErCuRIC’s mission and objectives with an emphasis of the Public and Patient Involvement (PPI) aspects of the project. Margaret, Chair, NI Cancer Research Consumer Forum commented, “The conference was a great opportunity for listening, talking, sharing and meeting researchers, politicians, regulators and other patient and public involvement representatives. The Congress highlighted the need for partnership and collaboration and showed the importance of MErCuRIC as a pan Europe study to benefit people diagnosed with bowel cancer. Among those I had the privilege to meet and share information about MErCuRIC with were Barbara and Mark Moss who are Patient Ambassadors. Barbara is a EuropaColon Board member and Chair of the EuropaColon Patient Advisory Group. The poster presentation session gave further time and opportunity to forge links with EuropaColon and other groups with patient initiatives, and to explain MErCuRIC as a study and describe the PPI input into the project’s design.”

Ruth Boyd remarked, ”Majella Woods, Margaret Grayson and I representing the NI Cancer Research Consumer Forum (NICRCF) were delighted to meet ECPC Director, Lydia Makaroff at the 1st EAPM Congress. The motto of the ECPC is ‘Nothing about us, without us!’ an ethos the NICRCF subscribe to too! Lydia Makaroff expertly chaired a conference session entitled ‘The Value of Innovation from the Cancer Patient Perspective.’ Lydia set the scene providing background to the ECPC and their paper on the ‘The Value of Innovation in Oncology.’ Other speakers covered topics such as access to innovation in the National Health Service (UK) (including enrolment to clinical trials), potential innovation in the UK bowel cancer screening programme, disparities across Europe in cancer care and outcomes, and the Data Lab in Scotland. This was a fascinating and thought-provoking agenda offering perspectives on innovation in diagnosis and treatment, equality of access to cancer care, and the significance of data, but the session also offered hope for future cancer outcomes through policy, technological advances, and collective working across all stakeholders.”

Pictured below left to right at EAPM Congress 2017: (left photo) Margaret Grayson with Barbara Moss of EuropaColon and Mark Moss, a Patient Ambassador, and (right photo) Lydia Makaroff ECPC Director, with Majella Woods, Margaret Grayson and Ruth Boyd of the NICRC Forum.