India must make cancer care more affordable and accessible, says commission

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 25 April 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g2945
  1. Cheryl Travasso
  1. 1Mumbai

India needs to make cancer care more affordable, increase its healthcare workforce, and deal with socio-cultural barriers to cancer control, to improve the diagnosis of cancer and access to care, a commission has said.

The commission, which reported in Lancet Oncology, also called for India to establish cancer registries, develop regional and national cancer plans, increase its spending on healthcare and research, develop tumour banks and clinical databases, and tailor programmes to deal with the needs of its rural and urban populations.1

About 2.5 million people in India live with an existing diagnosis of cancer, and 0.55 million die from the disease every year, with most deaths (71%) among those aged 30-69. Although the risk of getting cancer before age 75 is only 10% in India …

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