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BCNA News 22 Jun 2017

Cancer the greatest burden of all disease groups

A new report released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) shows that cancer is the disease group that has the biggest impact or ‘burden’ on the nation’s health, despite heart disease being more common and causing more deaths.

The report looked at cancer burden in terms of years of life lost due to early cancer death and years of healthy life lost due to living with cancer.

Significantly, the report showed that while the cancer burden has lessened, it still accounted for one-fifth of the burden of disease.

When years of life lost because of early death due to cancer are added together for all women who had any type of cancer, 18.5 per cent of those years lost are due to breast cancer.

In addition, among all Australian men and women, breast cancer accounts for the third highest proportion of years of life lost because of early death due to cancer (8.1 per cent), after lung cancer (19.3 per cent) and bowel cancer (11 per cent).

BCNA CEO Christine Nolan said the report highlighted that breast cancer continued to be a significant problem for the Australian community.

‘Importantly, the report showed that Australians in remote and lower socioeconomic areas and Indigenous Australians experienced greater cancer burden than other Australians. Breast cancer is one of the top contributors to this total burden for these groups in Australia,’ Christine said.

‘BCNA’s mission is to ensure Australians have the best possible breast cancer journey wherever they live and whatever their circumstances.’

You can view the full report here.