Cancer Action Plan welcomed

Wednesday 17 December, 2008

The Cancer Council Victoria welcomes today's release of the new Cancer Action Plan.

Director of the Cancer Council Victoria, Professor David Hill, said it was extremely pleasing that the Victorian Government had put together and launched the plan - a first for Victoria.

"Some of the targets are ambitious, and that's good. They point to excellent outcomes for the community if achieved," Professor Hill said.

"A feature of the Plan is that it is comprehensive with long-term investments and strategies that could lead to saving lives in the short and medium term.

"The Plan sets the stage for full implementation of bowel cancer screening for people over 50. However, for this to occur, decisive action will also be needed from the Commonwealth Government. It is most encouraging that the Cancer Action Plan adds its voice to the cancer control community. Experts have for some time identified bowel cancer screening as an immediately effective way to save lives.

"I look forward to working with the State Government on the plan," he said.

The Cancer Council collects all cancer data and is the official source of statistics for the State. Many of the statistics presented in the Cancer Action Plan were provided by the Cancer Council.

"We collect details of all cancers diagnosed on the Victorian Cancer Registry. The law (Cancer Act 1982) requires us to do this so the State has up-to-date and accurate figures, which are useful to improve cancer prevention, control and treatment.

"Data has been collected since 1982. All information is confidential and held under tight security but is critical for our understanding of the cancer picture and how it has changed as survival rates increase due to research, earlier diagnosis and better treatment," Professor Hill said.


Latest Victorian Cancer statistics summary

Latest published statistics for Victoria are for 2005 - Canstat No45, Feb 2008. Cancer in Victoria 2005.


Incidence

New cases in 2005 = 24,408 - male 13,449 female 10,959

Average of 67 new diagnoses amongst Victorians each day

<1% of tumours are diagnosed in children under 15 and 58% in persons aged over 65 years.

New Diagnoses
by age group

Male

Female

Total

0-14

74 

54 

128 

15-24

127

97 

224 

25-59

3,315

3,933

7,248

60-74

5,498

3,307

8,805 

75+

4,435

3,568

8,003

Total

13,449

10,959

24,408 

 

 

New diagnoses
by leading sites

Male

Female

Total

% of total

Prostate 

 
3,970 3,970 16.3%
Bowel 1,901 1,540 3,441 14.1% 
Breast 29 3,038 3,067 12.6%

Melanoma

1,252 1,095 2,347 9.6%

Lung

1,432 860 2,292 9.4%
Lymphoma 651 531 1,182 4.8%
Leukaemia 400 266 666  2.7%

Unknown primary site

324 325 649 2.7%
Kidney 396 195  591 2.4%
Head & Neck 421 159 580 2.4%

Total

13,449

10,959

24,408

 


Leading sites in males: Prostate, bowel, lung, melanoma, lymphoma, head & neck, leukaemia, kidney, stomach, pancreas

Leading sites in females: breast, bowel, melanoma lung, lymphoma, uterus, ovary, pancreas, leukaemia, thyroid.

 

Mortality

Deaths in 2005 = 9,784 - male 5,396 female 4,388

Average of 27 deaths amongst Victorians each day

 

Deaths by
leading sites

Male

Female

Total

% of total

Lung 1109 684 1790 18.3%
Bowel 638 535 1173 12.0%
Prostate 737 - 737 7.5%

Breast

4 703 707 7.2%

Pancreas

241 265 506 5.2%
Leukaemia 227 167 396 4.0%

Lymphoma

199 180 379 3.9%

Stomach

204 119 323 3.3%
Oesophagus 194 109 303 3.1%
Brain & CNS 168 131 299 3.1%

Total

5,396

4,388

9,784

 

 

Leading sites in males: Lung, prostate, bowel, p[pancreas, leukaemia, stomach, lymphoma, oesophagus, brain & CNS, bladder

Leading sites in females: breast, lung, bowl, pancreas, ovary, lymphoma, leukaemia, brain & CNS, stomach, oesophagus

Survival: From Cancer Survival Victoria 2007: Estimates of survival in 2004 (and comparisons with earlier periods). English D et al. April 2007 . Overall cancer survival increased from 48% in 1990 to 61% in 2004 and is slightly better in women (64%) than men (58%).

Figure shows the ranking of survival by cancer sites in 2004 and 1995.

Graph of cancer survival statistics - 1995 vs 2004

Most cancers showed improvements in survival over this period. Those for which there was no significant improvement included cancers of the pancreas, larynx, brain & CMS, cervix, Hodgkin lymphoma and chronic lymphocytic leukaemia.