Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2006-10-24-Speech-2-053"

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"Madam President, Commissioners, ladies and gentlemen, today we have been hearing the overwhelming figures that bear witness to the effect that breast cancer has on the lives of both men and women. It is a matter of pure chance whether treatment is started quickly and efficiently and therefore how high the woman's chances of survival are. As the coordinator of the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality, I have been working on this topic for many years, and we have gained a great deal of experience. We cannot leave it at that, though. We have had the EU guidelines for quality mammography for over ten years now. In Belgium, where I have my second home, I am invited for routine screening, while in my homeland of Germany nothing is happening. The lives of mothers, daughters and wives could be saved, and the trauma reduced. However, we are still only progressing at a snail's pace. The Committee for Women's Rights and Gender Equality presented an excellent report in 2003, but very little has happened since. I think there is a lack of political will in this matter: I can tell that the will is there at European level, but in the Member States much still remains to be done. The Seventh Research Framework Programme now once again gives us the opportunity to exert pressure so that more money goes into research. In the case of other women's diseases, such as migraines, too, there has been little political pressure applied to move forward and take interdisciplinary action. As over 20 years of experience in the United States have shown, interdisciplinary breast centres can provide very efficient assistance. We now also have such centres in Europe, but here, too, I do not see any sign of the political will to really implement that. Let us therefore work together, here in the European Parliament, to fight against the trauma of breast cancer, and do so for everyone, not just those who can afford it."@en1

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