New UN Agency report shows cancer is now the world's biggest killer - with the number of cases set to explode in coming years
On World Cancer Day 2014, a new global cancer report compiled by UN Agency, The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) shows that as a single entity, cancer is the biggest cause of mortality worldwide with an estimated 8.2 million deaths from cancer in 2012.
Cancer cases worldwide are forecast to rise by 75% and reach close to 25 million over next two decades.
EACR member Chris Wild, the director of the WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer, told the BBC: "The global cancer burden is increasing and quite markedly, due predominately to the ageing of the populations and population growth. If we look at the cost of treatment of cancers, it is spiralling out of control, even for the high-income countries. Prevention is absolutely critical and it's been somewhat neglected."
Restrictions on alcohol and sugar need to be considered, say World Health Organization scientists as there now exists a "real need" to focus on cancer prevention by tackling smoking, obesity and drinking.
Low- and middle-income countries are most at risk of cancer overwhelming their health systems and hindering economic growth, as they have the least resources and infrastructure to cope with the predicted levels of disease escalation.
"Governments must recognise the growing cancer burden in their country. The new figures from IARC show that the incidence of cancer globally will continue to grow unless we recognise the threat and act on it now,” urges Cary Adams, Chief Executive Officer, Union for International Cancer Control (UICC).
Compiled by IARC, The World Cancer Report series is recognised as an authoritative source of global perspective and information on cancer.
The World Cancer Report 2014 is available in print and online here
Read more from the press release here
Cancer 'tidal wave' on horizon, warns WHO – BBC News
Worldwide cancer cases expected to soar by 70% over next 20 years – The Guardian
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