- Figures compiled by the World Health Organization showed the U.S. trails behind many less developed nations for cancer deaths, with a rate of 85.7 fatalities from the disease per 100,000 people in 2020
- Struggle to get on top of cancer deaths is often blamed on the expensive healthcare system
- But less developed countries also tend to have younger populations on average, reducing the risk from cancer because it tends to strike in older populations
- They may also be under-reporting deaths because of a lack of healthcare and diagnostic tests
- It comes after Biden said he aimed to halve deaths from cancer by 2042 to 300,000 a year
President Joe Biden unveiled Monday more funding for researching blood tests to diagnose the disease early as he aims to halve fatalities to 300,000 a year by 2042. The amount being spent was not revealed.
But figures compiled by the World Health Organization (WHO) showed the U.S. trails behind many less developed nations with 85.7 cancer deaths per 100,000 people a year — although this figure is trending downwards.
America’s cancer rates are often blamed on its expensive healthcare system, with some putting off having potential warning signs checked for fear of the cost.
But many less developed nations tend to have much younger populations and lower life expectancies, reducing the risk of the illness because it is more likely in older age. They also do not have as strong a health infrastructure, suggesting many deaths may go undiagnosed and unreported.
U.S. cancer mortality rates are, however, below those in many other western nations including the UK — with its publicly funded health system — France and Italy. This may be linked to having fewer smokers, with a quarter of Europeans smoking compared to 14 percent of Americans, and getting faster access to new treatments.
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