The Index of Cancer Preparedness (ICP) measures how ready healthcare systems are for the challenge of cancer and seeks to answer this question: how well prepared are countries to achieve major reductions in premature deaths from cancer, increase cancer survival rates, and improve the quality of life for cancer patients and survivors?
The ICP was developed following a literature review and an expert panel meeting that guided the selection of suitable indicators of cancer preparedness. The index explores the issue of cancer preparedness through three broad domains:
- Policy and planning: focusing on levers that are mostly in the hands of policymakers.
- Care delivery: looking at capacity to deliver cancer-specific services within health systems themselves.
- Health systems and governance: acknowledging that cancer cannot be defeated by cancer-focused activities alone.
The three domains comprise 13 sub-domains and 45 indicators. These range from the existence of policies to encourage physical activity to the extent of palliative care provision in the public health system. Other indicators look at issues as various as the size of the healthcare workforce and the prevalence of corruption. Indicators for each country were scored out of 100 following standard guidelines. Indicator scores were then aggregated using weighted averages into subdomain scores, which were finally computed into an overall score. Scoring and weighting across indicators were defined by the expert panel. The ICP measurements rely on evidence collected by The Economist Intelligence Unit and from data obtained from respected international databases.