The French National Cancer Institute

Last updated: 30/05/2016

The French National Cancer Institute (INCa) is the preeminent health and science agency in charge of cancer control in France, created under the Public Health Act of 9th August 2004. It reports to the ministries for Health and for Research.

The Institute is a public interest grouping (GIP) which brings together State representatives, charities, health insurance funds, research organisations and hospital federations. These stakeholders share a common goal of reducing the incidence of avoidable cancers and the number of cancer deaths, improving the quality of life of people with cancer during and after their illness, and reducing inequalities related to cancer.

The Institute provides an integrated approach encompassing all cancer-control dimensions (health, scientific, social and economic) and areas of intervention (prevention, screening, care and research) for the benefit of patients and their relatives.

To catalyse progress, the INCa acts as an interface with patients, their friends and families, the healthcare system users, general public, healthcare professionals, researchers, experts and decision-makers.

The Institute is responsible for rolling out the 2014-2019 Cancer Plan.

Our missions

  • To provide an integrated approach to cancer control;
  • To spur innovation;
  • To produce evidence-based guidelines for decision-makers and professionals;
  • To coordinate regional oncology networks;
  • To analyse data to guide action more effectively;
  • To disseminate knowledge about cancer.

Our strategic goals


  • To support emerging fields, i.e. genomic studies, experimental study models, biology and immunology;
  • To translate fundamental discoveries into advances for the benefit of the population and for patients — diagnostic tools, personalised treatments and quality of life — as fast as possible;
  • To increase the availability of biological and clinical resources to researchers;
  • To develop clinical trials, especially new molecular-driven trials tailored to targeted therapies and more broadly to innovations in drugs or technologies;
  • To strengthen France’s leading position in personalised medicine.

Public health

  • To improve knowledge on cancer risk factors;
  • To continuously enhance the organisation of screening, by assessing and incorporating scientific and technical advances;
  • To define and adapt screening strategies according to people’s level of cancer risk;
  • To provide information on the different screening modalities;
  • To provide open access to cancer data.

Cancer care

  • To guarantee equal access to safe, high-quality care;
  • To develop relevant care procedures for people with rare cancers, people with a genetic predisposition, elderly people, children and teenagers;
  • To support therapeutic and technological developments, and career paths in oncology;
  • To inform and support patients, their relatives and friends, through a range of services (e-cancer website, guides, hotline);
  • To foster improvements in the quality of life during and after the disease.

Our resources

The Institute board of directors is made up of representatives of the core GIP members and of eight qualified individuals. It is supported by an International Scientific Advisory Board and three consultative bodies:

  • an ethics committee;
  • an audit committee;
  • a users and professionals committee (COMUP). 

The Institute has an annual budget of approximately €100 million. Most of it is provided by the ministries for Health and for Research, contributions from other GIP members and funds from partnerships with public and private organisations. About half of this budget is allocated to research funding. The rest is allocated to healthcare initiatives, public health and public information.

The Institute has ca. 150 employees and works with several hundred outside experts each year.

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