Posted by: rachelhampton | 07/12/2010

Understanding the burden of cancer in developing countries

In June, the Global Health Council published the Executive Summary of the upcoming report, Understanding the Burden of Cancer in Developing Countries. The report is part of the Council’s Cancer Advocacy and Learning Initiative, a project to raise awareness about the burden of cancer in developing countries and to develop policy, advocacy and research agendas to direct the global health community’s work on this topic of concern.

Like infectious diseases, and maternal, child and reproductive health issues, cancer is a growing health problem in developing countries. The global cancer burden has doubled in the past 30 years; further, by 2020, the cancer burden of 2000 is expected to double again. Currently, more than half of the cancer burden in borne by low- or middle-income countries, and in 2008 an estimated 4.8 million people died of cancer in less developed countries. The three leading types of cancer in less developed countries are lung cancer, stomach cancer and liver cancer.

The Executive Summary of the report provides an overview of the burden of cancer in developing countries and examines some the risk factors that contribute to increased cancer rates in low- and middle-income countries. It also discusses the role of cancer in the broader global health context, and outlines policy and research priorities needed to address the growing burden of this non-communicable disease.

The full report will be released later this summer and will include:  a summary of a critical review of the peer-reviewed literature on cancers associated with reproductive health and with infectious diseases, findings from the Council’s Cancer Working Group and focus groups held at our 2009 international conference, and the results of an online cancer survey with over 170 respondents. The full literature review will also be available later this summer.

To read the Council’s Executive Summary from the upcoming report, Understanding the Burden of Cancer in Developing Countries, please visit:  http://www.globalhealth.org/images/pdf/publications/2010_position_cancer.pdf


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