It’s the second leading cause of death in the United States, killing around 580,000 people each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
This week, the World Health Organization announced its prediction that cancer cases could go up globally over the next 20 years if something isn’t done to stop the increase.
If current trends continue, the world risks an increase of 60 percent in cancer cases over the next two decades.
That warning from the World Health Organization, which is urging cancer services to be stepped up.
The problem isn’t more kinds of cancer, but overwhelmed health agencies.
The organization predicts more than 80 percent of new cancer cases will be in low- and middle-income countries, where survival rates are currently lowest.
Why? Those countries are committing their energy toward fighting infectious diseases and improving maternal and child health at the expense of the long-term challenge of diagnosing and treating various cancers.
Last year, more than 90 percent of high-income countries reported comprehensive treatment services for cancer in the public health system, while fewer than 1 in 6 low-income countries did so.
The WHO director-general suggests we could save seven million lives over the next decade by targeting the right science to each country, by expanding universal health coverage and by getting key members of each country’s health care community to collaborate more.
WHO highlights a wide range of proven interventions to prevent new cancer cases, including controlling tobacco use, which the organizations say is responsible for 25 percent of cancer deaths, vaccinations, screening and treatment.