Cancer Mortality Continues To Fall – What Research Has Shown


Based on data for the five years 2015-2019, there is a steady decline in cancer mortality for both sexes at a rate of 2.1% per year

Cancer mortality continues to decline and is continuing to improve. Based on the data for the five years 2015-2019 there is a steady decrease in cancer mortality for both sexes at a rate of 2.1% per year, which corresponds to approximately 972 000 lives saved each year

Since 2006 cancer mortality has decreased for both sexes. In 2015-2019 death rates declined at 2.1% per year for males, and 0.7% per year for females.

The cancer mortality rate continues to decline. Comparing the five-year period from 2015 to 2019, for both males and females, there was a 2.1% decrease in age-adjusted mortality rate each year, with a total of 20,865 deaths lower by an estimated 1%, during this period.

Cancer mortality rates have been steadily decreasing by around 2% per year since the late 1990s. Since then, cancer rates have been broadly plateauing in most countries but are still rising in some countries. These trends are largely driven by improvements in early diagnosis of small cancer lesions and improvements in treatment. Despite this progress, some cancers remain deadly.

There continues to be a steady decrease in cancer mortality for both sexes at a rate of 2.1% per year. The data also suggests that statins have reduced the incidence and mortality rates by 3.2% in men and 1.9% in women (ranges). It is likely that these reductions are not attributable to better treatment, but rather to faster onset of human papillomavirus-associated cancers and better prevention through screening and vaccination drugs

The female cancer mortality shows a downward trend from 9,630 deaths in 2015 to 9,053 deaths in 2019. The male mortality rate decreased by 0.2% per year. The total number of cancer deaths has increased between 2015 and 2019 by 3800 people, which represents an increase of 1.8%. The annual age-standardised mortality rate has been decreasing since 2011 (0.7% per year) and is below the international average (1.2%).

A decline in cancer mortality has been observed over the past few years in South Africa. The general trend is quite linear both for males and females .

Cancer mortality continues to decline, with a five year averted rate of 13 per 100. The new trend has been intentional and is directly related to the reduction in tobacco use over the past several decades – smoking has been shown to cause lung cancer, oral cancer and other types of cancer. Although progress has been slow relative to other diseases, this is the largest public health achievement of modern times.”


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