Policy and planning is the weakest category in the ICP, although it is still above the global average (ranked 15th). The most visible weakness is regarding a national cancer control plan. Even though a plan exists, it lacks details on implementation, monitoring and evaluation. An initiative by the Czech Oncological Society, the current plan lacks the leadership and ownership of a government agency, which could be helpful to allocate resources strategically. The country fares better in the assessment of cancer data and research. Particularly, a high-quality population-based cancer registry provides a foundation for effective tracking of cancer and action by health institutions.
The country is ranked 9th in the assessment of care delivery. It is a leader in immunisation and screening and early detection. The wide reach of these services among the population is supported by comprehensive coverage by health insurance schemes. Modern procedures offered include HPV DNA testing and BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations genetic testing. There is also a strong health workforce and universal coverage of treatments in the WHO essential cancer drug list. Treatment at Complex Oncology Centres (COCs) across the country is recognised as very high quality, but some gaps remain. Referral from primary to specialised care can be slow, while follow-up services for children survivors and palliative care are not provided in a standardised way in all institutions. Patient-centred approaches are also to be implemented more consistently across the health system.
The best performing category in the ICP is health system and governance (ranked 6th). Infrastructure is a particular strength as measured by the availability of skilled healthcare professionals. An indication of political will, healthcare funding is average among the group but could still be boosted to catch up with the growing complexity of cancer demands in the population. There is a Health Technology Assessment (HTA) mechanism but its remit could be expanded to cover medical devices and medicines used in hospitals. Lastly, there are examples of intersectoral collaboration in healthcare between the health and education authorities in promoting healthy lifestyles.