01 February 2018
By 2040, one in 18 Australians predicted to have a personal cancer history
According to Cancer Council’s most recent report predicting cancer prevalence, by the year 2040, it is expected one in 18 Australians, or 1.9 million people, will be living with a personal history of cancer. That includes all those who are either living with, or have survived beyond a cancer diagnosis.
This is a forecasted increase of more than 72 per cent. Currently, one in 22 Australians, equating to 1.1 million people, are estimated to have been affected by cancer.
Why cancer prevalence is on the rise
Changing population—our ageing population means that there will be a larger percentage of Australians who fall into the older demographics, compared to today. As healthcare, treatments, and standards of living improve, people are living longer beyond cancer.
Early detection—as more accurate early detection tests are developed and more widely adopted for certain cancers, an increase in prevalence can actually be a good thing—people are catching their cancers early, when treatment is most likely to be effective.
Better treatment—more advanced treatments, which are better tailored to the patient and have fewer adverse side effects, are getting closer every day. This means more people are living with or surviving cancer.
Other insights about cancer in 2040
Lower socio-economic standard groups have lower survival rates—meaning we have to pay greater attention to preventing, detecting, and treating cancers for harder to reach populations.
Approximately 58 per cent of those with a personal history will be 70+—meaning we need to focus on support for older generations and those living beyond cancer. These groups might still be living with long-term effects of the disease and its treatment.
From today to the future
4 February 2018 is World Cancer Day—an international day to raise awareness of cancer and to encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment.
This year’s theme is “We can. I can.”
It takes the desire of individuals to make a difference and their contributions to make it happen.
Every day, there’s something that you can do. It might be raising funds by hosting an event, or volunteering your time. It might be sharing your cancer experience with others, or making a donation towards our life-changing cancer research.
Cancer Council SA works across every aspect of every cancer, but we could not do any of it without the support, donations, and volunteered time of our wonderful South Australian community.
Whether it’s helping people today, or being there for those who need us tomorrow, we’re here for you when you need us—from the moment you’re diagnosed, through your treatment and beyond. Cancer never rests, and for that reason, neither do we.
Every minute. Every hour. Every day.
Cancer Council SA