World Health Organization Predicts 81% Increase In Cancer Cases By 2040

Less than 15% of these nations offer complete cancer treatment services through their health systems.

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The World Health Organization (WHO) has revealed that there will be an 81% increase in cancer cases in low and middle-income countries by 2040. This is due to the lack of care and prevention.

In a recent report, WHO said that these countries had used their limited resources on the eradication of infectious diseases and improving the health of children and parents rather than fighting cancer. Due to this, these countries had the highest cancer mortality rate.

Less than 15% of these nations offer complete cancer treatment services through their health systems, meanwhile, for their richer counterparts, this number stands at 90%.

“At least 7 million lives could be saved over the next decade, by identifying the most appropriate science for each country situation, by basing strong cancer responses on universal health coverage, and by mobilizing different stakeholders to work together”, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.

Prior to World Cancer Day, WHO along with the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) have released two reports. One of these is aimed at setting a global agenda on the disease, while the second focuses on prevention and research.

The report also highlighted ways to prevent the disease, this included reduced use of tobacco, which is responsible for a quarter of all cancer deaths. Other than that, another way is vaccination against hepatitis B to prevent liver cancer and eliminating cervical cancer by HPV vaccination.

“This is a wake-up call to all of us to tackle the unacceptable inequalities between cancer services in rich and poor countries,” a WHO Assistant Director-General Ren Minghui, said in the report.

“If people have access to primary care and referral systems then cancer can be detected early, treated effectively and cured. Cancer should not be a death sentence for anyone, anywhere,” he said.

“Controlling cancer does not have to be expensive,” member of WHO’s department for management of non-communicable diseases Andre Ilbawi told reporters.

The report found that by 2040, there will be a huge increase in overall cancer cases, and tobacco was responsible for about 25% of cancer deaths.

20% drop in mortality between 2000 and 2015:

Director of the International Agency for Research on Cancer Elisabete Weiderpass said that due to improved cancer treatments in high-income countries, there had been a 20% drop in mortality between 2000 and 2015. But, in poorer countries, only a 5% drop was observed.

“We need to see everyone benefiting equally,” she said.

The report said that cancer had been considered a disease of the wealthy countries for a long time but this is no longer the case. Now, the chances of people getting diagnosed with cancer worldwide are one in five.

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