Risk of Dying from Cancer Drops 20 Percent in 2 Decades

There are expected to be about 1.7 million new cases of cancer in 2014.

A new health care institute is designed to encourage national policy change

The American Cancer Society estimates reductions in cancer death rates during the past two decades have led to about 1.3 million avoided cancer deaths.

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Despite the decline in overall death rates, the report says, there is still as much as a  22 percentage point gap in 5-year survival rates between black and white individuals for certain cancers. But rather than having a difference in cancer biology, the report says the racial disparities in survival rates stem from differences in treatment, stage at diagnosis and other co-occurring health conditions.

“Further progress can be accelerated by applying existing cancer control knowledge across all segments of the population, with an emphasis on those groups in the lowest socioeconomic bracket and other disadvantaged populations,” the report says.

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