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Statistics estimate over 22.1 million cancer survivors in the U.S. alone come 2030.
This year that number was counted at 16.9 million Americans according to the Cancer Treatment and Survivorship Statistics, a report produced every three years to better assist the public health sector prepare for helping the growing population.
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The good news is that the number of cancer survivors keeps increasing year to year in the U.S. This is mostly due to a growing and aging population. With better healthcare comes longer lives.
The report describes 'cancer survivors' as people who have a history of cancer, from the moment they are diagnosed and for the remainder of their lives.
More women have cancer than men
The report stated that 8.1 million men and 8.8 million women have a history of cancer in the U.S. The most common cancers in men in 2019 are prostate, colon, and rectum. And in women they are breast, endometrium (uterine), and colon.
The authors of the report suggest that in 2030 the numbers will rise to 22.1 million survivors. Their estimation relies on projections from the United States Census Bureau, and uses incidence, mortality and survival rates.
The advancement of treatment between now and 2030 could change these statistics.
There is still a long way before challenges surrounding survivors' way of life runs once they battle cancer off.
Cancer post-care must become a priority
"People with a history of cancer have unique medical, psychosocial, and economic needs that require proactive assessment and management by health care providers," said Robin Yabroff, Ph.D., senior scientific director of Health Services Research and co-author of the report. "Although there are growing numbers of tools that can assist patients, caregivers, and clinicians in navigating the various phases of cancer survivorship, further evidence-based resources are needed to optimize care."
The report places a big emphasis on the focus towards post-care assistance for cancer survivors, especially if numbers are going to keep increasing as estimated.
Some efforts are already being made by the American College of Surgeons, the Alliance for Quality Psychosocial Cancer Care, and the American Cancer Society.
For example, the American Cancer Society recently published a cancer survivorship blueprint to create highlighted areas for care delivery, research, education, and policy.
More still needs to be done, but the steps are already being taken.