Current president of the Republic of Slovenia, Borut Pahor, took over the honorary patronage on the national screening and early detection programme for colorectal cancer – the Svit Programme – from previous president, dr. Danilo Türk. This made him an official patron of the Svit Programme. He wrote in his official letter from 10 th January 2013:
I am pleased to take over the honourable patronage over the national screening and early detection programme for colorectal cancer – the Svit Programme. Quiet and insidious disease affects more and more people each year, because each year around 1,500 people are diagnosed with cancer. This is a great public health problem, because it is a sneaky form of cancer, which develops in our bodies without any obvious symptoms and we discover it too late. The only option is to discover the disease in time. There is a systematic screening and regular testing, implemented in the framework of the Svit Programme, which follows modern scientific discoveries and experiences of the most successful prevention programmes for early cancer detection in EU Member States. The responsiveness, which is currently at 60 % in Slovenia, is very significant because it is key for the success of the screening programme.
Therefore, allow me to express my gratitude to all – volunteers and healthcare workers, who have contributed the most in the past years for the successful implementation of the Svit Programme. Solidarity, readiness to help a fellow man and humanity are a unique bridge of communication and understanding in our society and thus your greatest contribution to encouraging cancer patients and their loved ones. You are the ones who in their work each day realize that life tests us frequently; however, we can get through many things with positive thinking.
Unfortunately, most of colorectal cancers in Slovenia are found in advanced stadium, which means worse prognosis and poorer quality of life. Therefore, it is of great importance that we citizens regularly participate in the Svit Programme, which is set at the highest quality level and whose success depends on the reposes of the invited. Individually, we should be aware of the importance to respond to the Svit Programme invitation, and we should try to raise the same awareness in our friends and relatives.
I respect your efforts and I sincerely thank you for these efforts and your contribution to mutual benefit.”