By 2020, cancer care up by 27 percent

Jan. 13, 2011 at 5:11 PM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 13 (UPI) -- A 27 percent increase in U.S. medical costs for treating cancer is projected by 2020 because of the aging population, U.S. health officials say.

Angela B. Mariotto of the surveillance research program at the National Cancer Institute and colleagues estimate that assuming constant incidence, survival and cost, the 13.8 million cancer survivors in 2010 that cost some $125 billion will increase to 18 million cancer survivors in 2020 with associated costs of $158 billion.

Current estimates of U.S. cancer care costs are based on data from 2003 and earlier, the researchers say. Cancer prevalence was calculated from cancer incidence and survival models estimated from Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results Program data.

This increase in medical costs for future cancer care reflects U.S. population changes only, Mariotto says.

The findings are published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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