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Patients need support to navigate complex advances within the metastatic breast cancer (mBC) landscape

With recent treatment advances for metastatic breast cancer (mBC), patients face an increasingly complex potential care pathway.1 Patients need an easier way to understand and navigate through their treatment and support options for the management of their disease. According to the Global Status of Advanced / Metastatic Breast Cancer 2005 – 2015 Decade Report, access to reliable information is generally deemed easier for breast cancer (BC) than for mBC, and mBC still receives less public attention than early breast cancer (eBC).2,3

Over the next 15 years, the increase in deaths due to BC is expected to nearly double, underscoring the urgent need to address gaps in current care.4 The goals to catalyse scientific improvements and public awareness within the mBC landscape can only be realised through a multidisciplinary approach.5 The “historically neglected patient population” of women with advanced BC or mBC, would benefit from greater support to navigate through their cancer journey.6

Even though the benefits of a dedicated “patient navigator” are acknowledged, many centers cannot yet provide each patient with a supportive navigator due to lack of human resources.6

Pfizer Oncology is currently working on providing mBC patients with an alternative solution by launching a digital form of “patient navigator”. The German pilot program was created in collaboration with patients and patient advocates as well as health care professionals (HCPs) to help guide patients through available informative resources and address potential questions.

Other tools have already been launched to guide mBC patients and their families through the care pathway. Tools such as the Me&MBC Website and the EmotionSpace app were created collaboratively by patients, patient advocacy groups and Pfizer to empower patients to develop capabilities to improve their own quality of life within their cancer experience. These resources are amongst a range of new digital tools, like eCancer patient or iManageCancer, which are aimed at supporting cancer patients.  

With a much greater goal and ambition to drive holistic global improvements in mBC care, the Global mBC Vision 2025 Call-to-Action has been initiated by the European School of Oncology (ESO) and a multi-stakeholder taskforce from the global breast cancer community.7 A Call-to-Action and ten distinct goals were identified to both motivate changing the future of breast cancer worldwide and to improve the lives of people living with mBC. This includes the need to provide mBC-specific information tools for every patient and to improve access to non-clinical supportive services for mBC. The Global mBC Vision 2025 is a powerful initiative to provide patients with full information and capabilities for a future of joint decision making, and will help improve overall mBC patient needs by the year 2025.7 The overall vision is to provide the best treatment and care options and leave no mBC patient behind.

The Global mBC Vision 2025 Call-to-Action was launched on March 16th 2017 at the 15th St. Gallen International Breast Cancer Conference.

1 Cardoso F. Metastatic breast cancer patients: the forgotten heroes! Breast 2009;18:271-272.

2 Global Status of Advanced / Metastatic Breast Cancer: 2005 - 2015 Decade Report Summary. Sponsored by Pfizer Oncology. March 2016. Available at:

3 General Population Survey. Sponsored by Pfizer. March 2016. Available at:

4 World Health Organization. Projections of mortality and causes of death, 2015 and 2030. Available at: Accessed April 2017.

5 Cardoso F, et al. 3rd ESO-ESMO international consensus guidelines for Advanced Breast Cancer (ABC 3). The Breast 2016;31:244-259.

6 Cardoso F, et al. ESO-ESMO 2nd international consensus guidelines for advanced breast cancer (ABC2). The Breast 2014;23:489-502.

7 Global mBC Vision 2025 Call-to-Action. European School of Oncology; in collaboration with Pfizer. 2017. Available at: // Accessed April 2017.

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Cancer Intelligence