Vrouw op het werk

Reducing cancer incidence by advocacy and lobby

KWF Dutch Cancer Society wants to play a role in influencing cancer control policies and legislation that can help reduce cancer incidence, improve survival of cancer and quality of life of cancer patients. We use instruments like advocacy and lobby to create awareness, contribute to agendasetting and campaign for policies and legislation that contribute to our mission.


Facts and Figures

Cancer is the leading cause of death in the Netherlands.

Mortality Rates*

In 2021 44.996 persons died of cancer: 24.266 men, 20.730 women.

The main tumors people died of:​ ​  
​For men: ​1. Lung cancer                              ​Mortality 5.512
​2. Prostate cancer Mortality 2.996
​3. Colorectal cancer Mortality 2.453
​For women: 1. Lung cancer​ ​Mortality 4.560
​2. Breast cancer ​Mortality 3.100
​3. Colorectal cancer ​Mortality 2.040


*Source: Statistics Netherlands (CBS)

Incidence Rates 

In 2022 124.109 persons got cancer: 65.591 men, 58.518 women.

​ ​The three most common cancers:  
​For men: ​1. Prostate cancer                      ​Incidence: 14.649
​2. Skin cancer ​Incidence:  12.526
​3. Lung cancer ​Incidence:   7.652
​For women: 1. Breast cancer​ ​Incidence: 15.596
​2. Skin cancer ​Incidence: 10.779
​3. Lung cancer ​Incidence:   6.981


*Source: Dutch Cancer Registry

At the moment more then 850.000 persons have cancer or survived cancer in the Netherlands (20-years prevalence per 1-1-2022).

The five years survival rate differs for the several types of cancer. The overall five year survival rate has increased up to 67% nowadays (diagnosis in 2017).

More information about the Dutch Cancer Registry and detailed facts and figures about incidence and mortality of cancer in the Netherlands:  http://www.iknl.nl (English version).


KWF Dutch Cancer Society considers advocacy as an important tool in achieving progress in cancer control at national and global level. The policy papers of KWF include recommendations for policymakers and politicians and are often the input for  advocacy at national level. Key points as tobacco control and quality of (psychosocial) care are currently issues for which KWF has developed advocacy strategies. Regarding tobacco control we collaborate with our partners in the ‘Netherlands smokefree Alliance’; regarding quality of psychosocial care we collaborate with e.g. the Dutch Society for Psychosocial Oncology. In 2012 we published the ‘FCTC Shadow Report: Dutch tobacco control: out of control?

At the international level KWF contributes to global advocacy through a special partnership with the UICC in the framework of the ‘together we are stronger’ program. We participate actively in Roundtables en world Cancer Leaders Summits,organized by UICC. Through awareness and agendasetting focusing on NCD’s globally we strive for progress in cancer control worldwide. Through our membership of ECL we participate in advocacy at EU-level especially in the areas of tobacco control and cancer patients rights.