Philippine Cancer Control Program

Cancers figure among the leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide, with approximately 14 million new cases and 8.2 million cancer related deaths in 2012 (WHO). More than 60% of world’s total new annual cases occur in Africa, Asia and Central and South America. These regions account for 70% of the world’s cancer deaths (WHO).  It is expected that annual cancer cases will rise from 14 million in 2012 to 22 within the next 2 decades (WHO).


Cancer is one of the four epidemic non-communicable diseases (NCDs) or lifestyle-related diseases (LRDs) which include cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus, and chronic respiratory diseases. According to Dr. Antonio Miguel Dans in his paper “Introduction to Non-Communicable Diseases” in August 2014, the NCDs are now considered a “silent disaster” of massive proportion that is ravaging the Filipino population, killing 300,000 victims a year, 800 every day, and 33 every hour. Its toll on lives is likened to “two 747 planes packed with passengers crashing every day”. Those NCDs share common risk factors, such as tobacco use, unhealthy diet, insufficient physical activity and the harmful use of alcohol.


Cancer remains a national health priority in the country with significant implications for individuals, families, communities, and the health system.  Cancer is the third leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the country after diseases of the heart and the vascular system (Philippine Health Statistics 2009).  Among Filipino men, the 6 most common sites of cancer diagnosed in 2010 (Globocan) were lung, liver, colon/rectum, prostate, stomach, and leukemia. Among Filipino women the 6 most common sites diagnosed were breast, cervix, lung, colon/rectum, ovary and liver.  Furthermore, 189 of every 100,000 Filipinos are afflicted with cancer while four Filipinos die of cancer every hour or 96 cancer patients every day, according to a study conducted by the University of the Philippines’ Institute of Human Genetics, National Institutes of Health.


In response to this growing and alarming epidemic of cancer, there is a need to revisit and strengthen the Philippine Cancer Control Program which started in 1990 through Administrative Order No. 89-A s. 1990, amending A.O. No. 188-A s. 1973.  Hence, the National Cancer Control Committee (NCCC) developed the National Cancer Prevention and Control Action Plan (NCPCAP) 2015-2020.


The National Cancer Prevention and Control Action Plan 2015-2020 shall cover the following key areas of concern:

  1. Policy and Standards Development
  1. Development of “National Policy on the Integration of Palliative and Hospice Care into the Philippine Health Care System”
  2. Development and Operationalization of National Cancer Prevention and Control Website and Social Media Sites
  3. Development of “Comprehensive National Policy on Cancer Prevention and Control”
  4. Establishment of National Cancer Center and Strategic Satellite Cancer Centers
  5. Expansion of PhilHealth Z Benefit Package Coverage to Other Cancers
    • PhilHealth Z-Benefit Package for catastrophic diseases (breast, prostate, cervical cancers and childhood acute lymphocytic leukemia) is an in-patient package which includes mandatory diagnostics, operating room expenses, doctor/professional fees, room and board, and medicines.


2.)   Advocacy and Promotions

  1. Cancer Awareness Campaigns


1. National Cancer Consciousness Week


2. Colon and Rectal Cancer Awareness Month


3. Cancer in Children Awareness Month


4. Cervical Cancer Awareness Month


5. Prostate Cancer Awareness Month


6. Lung Cancer Awareness Month


7. Liver Cancer Awareness Month


8. Breast Cancer Awareness Month


9. Cancer Pain Awareness Month



  1. Partnership with DepEd, CHED, DOLE-Bureau of Working Conditions, and Civil Service Commission

3.)   Capacity Building and Resource Mobilization

  1. Training of Trainers on Cervical Cancer Prevention and Control
  2. Training of Trainers on Palliative and Hospice Care
    • Palliative and hospice care has been the missing link in our health care delivery system. Our Universal Health Care or Kalusugan Pangkalahatan would not be complete without integrating palliative and hospice care into the existing promotive–preventive–curative-rehabilitative continuum of care. It is therefore imperative to institutionalize and integrate palliative and hospice care both in the hospitals or health facilities and in community or home-based level.
  3. Training of Trainers on Patient Navigation Program
    • Patient Navigation Program / Medicine Access Program: It provides chemotherapy for early stage breast cancer and acute lymphocytic leukemia and other diagnostic standard procedures for eligible patients at no cost. This project involves seven (7) government hospitals, namely: Philippine General Hospital, Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center, East Avenue Medical Center, Rizal Medical Center, Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center, Philippine Children’s Medical Center and Bicol Regional Training and Teaching Hospital.

4.)   Service Delivery

  1. Availability of Free Cervical Cancer Screening in all trained RHUs
  2. Availability of cryotherapy equipment in every province (81 provinces)
  3. Availability and accessibility of screenings for selected cancers in all trained RHUs
  4. School-based HPV vaccination of 9 to 13-year-old females
  5. Hepatitis B vaccination for all health workers nationwide

5.)   Information Management and Surveillance

  1. Establishment of National Cancer Registry (hospital- and population-based)
  2. Development and Operationalization of Cancer Helpline (including Telemedicine)

6.)   Research and Development

  1. Establishment of National Research and Development Program for Cancer Control
  2. Research: Study on the Socio-Economic Burden and Impact Assessment of Cancer in the Philippines
  3. Determination of Cancer Incidence in the Philippines 2008-2013



Comprehensive Cancer Care and Optimized Cancer Survival in 2025


To reduce the impact of cancer and improve the wellbeing of Filipino people with cancer and their families


1. To reduce premature mortality from cancer by 25% in 2025


2. To ensure relative reduction of the following risk factors for cancer:

a)      10% harmful use of alcohol

b)      10% physical inactivity

c)      30% tobacco use


3. To guarantee the availability of the following services for selected population:

a)      Selected cancer screening

b)      Human Papilloma Virus and Hepatitis B vaccination

c)      Access to palliative care

d)      Drug therapy and counseling








Undersecretary (Chair)

DOH – Office for Technical Services

Director IV (Co-Chair)

Disease Prevention and Control Bureau (DPCB)

Director IV

Knowledge Management and Information Technology Service (KMITS)

Director IV

Epidemiology Bureau (EpiB)

Senior Vice President

PhilHealth – Health Finance Policy Sector


UP-PGH Cancer Institute

Executive Director

Philippine Cancer Society Inc. (PCSI)


Health Promotion and Communications Service (HPCS)


Lifestyle-Related Disease Division (LRDD)

Program Manager

Lifestyle-Related Disease Division (LRDD)




  1. Set the roadmap of National Cancer Prevention and Control Program (NCPCP)
  2. Plan, establish and implement policies, guidelines and standards throughout the continuum of holistic health care (preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative)
  3. Advise / recommend upgrading of existing cancer management facilities in the country
  4. Coordinating body for all cancer works in the country
  5. Ensure the implementation of NCPCP down to the grassroots level
  6. Establish and carry out an effective nationwide cancer education program / dissemination
  7. Provide technical and financial support on cancer prevention, early detection, treatment and palliative care
  8. Establish and carry out effective training program
  9. Ensure the collection and analysis of data from registry and surveillance
  10. Implement, monitor and evaluate the NCPCP regularly through implementation review and impact evaluation
  11. Empower and engage all the stakeholders to actively work on and participate in on various areas of NCPCP
  12. Endorse support for researchers in the clinical, epidemiological, public health and knowledge management areas and in collaboration with international institutes
  13. Others that may be identified and approved by the Secretary of Health












·         Philippine College of Surgeons (PCS)

·         Philippine Society of Medical Oncology (PSMO)

·         Philippine Radiation Oncology Society (PROS)

·         Philippine Society of Pathologists (PSP)

·         Philippine College of Radiology (PCR)

·         Philippine Breast Cancer Society (PBCS)


·         Philippine College of Chest Physicians (PCCP)

·         PCS, PSMO, PROS, PSP, PCR


·         Society of Gynecologic Oncologists of the Philippines (SGOP)

·         PROS, PSP, PCR


·         Philippine Society of Colorectal Surgeons (PSCS)

·         Philippine Society of Gastroenterology (PSG)

·         Philippine Society of Digestive Endoscopy (PSDE)

·         PROS, PSP, PSMO, PCR


·         Philippine Society of Urologic Oncologists, Inc.

·         PSMO, PROS, PCR, PSP

Adult Leukemia

·         Philippine Society of Hematology and Blood Transfusion PSHBT)

·         PSP, PCR


·         Hepatology Society of the Philippines (HSP)

·         PCS, PSMO, PSP, PCR

Head and Neck

·         Philippine Society of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Inc. (PSO-HNS)

·         PCS, PSMO, PROS, PSP, PCR


·         Philippine Thyroid Council (PTC)

·         PCS, PSMO, PSP, PCR

Other Sites (Adult)

·         PCS, PSMO, PROS, PSP, PCR

Other Sites (Pediatric)

·         Philippine Society of Pediatric Oncology (PSPO)

·         Philippine Society of Pediatric Hematology (PSPH)

·         Philippine Children’s Medical Center (PCMC)

·         PCR, PCS











Policy and Standards Development

·         Disease Prevention and Control Bureau (DPCB)

·         Health Policy Development and Planning Bureau (HPDPB)

·         Health Facility and Development Bureau (HFDB)

·         Health Facility and Services Bureau (HFSB)

·         Pharmaceutical Division (PD)

·         National Ethics Committee (NEC)

·         PhilHealth (Standards and Monitoring / Accreditation)

·         PCMC, PCSI, Hospice Philippines (HP), KMITS

Research and Development

·         UP-PGH Cancer Institute

·         DOST – Philippine Council on Health Research and Development (PCHRD)

·         PhilHealth (Corporate Planning / Benefits Development and Research)

·         PCSI, HP, HPDPB, NEC, DPCB

Information Management and Surveillance

·         Epidemiology Bureau (EpiB), KMITS

·         Bureau of Local Health Systems Development (BLHSD)

·         DPCB, PCSI, PCMC

Advocacy and Promotions

·         HPCS

·         Philippine Information Agency (PIA), DPCB, PCSI, HP

·         Civil Society Organizations (CSO)

Service Delivery

·         PCSI

·         Philippine Oncology Nurses Association (PONA)

·         Philippine Nurses Association (PNA)

·         PALCARE


Capacity Building and Resource Mobilization

·         DPCB

·         Health Human Resource Development Bureau (HHRDB)

·         PhilHealth, PD, HFDB, HP, PONA, PNA, BHFS, PCSI

·         Finance Service

·         Materials Management Division (MMD)

·         Bureau of International Health Cooperation (BIHC)






Program Manager/Contact Information



Medical Officer IV

Program Manager

Philippine Cancer Prevention and Control including Palliative and Hospice Care

Department of Health

Disease Prevention and Control Bureau

Lifestyle-Related Disease Division

3rd floor, Building 14, DOH Central Office

San Lazaro Compound, Sta Cruz Manila, Philippines

Tel nos.: +632 651-7800, local 1751-1752

Direct line: +632 732-2493


Program Classification: