Navigation Links
Aging Population Could Send Cancer Costs Soaring

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 12 (HealthDay News) -- By 2020, the annual cost of cancer care in the United States is expected to reach at least $158 billion -- a 27 percent jump from 2010, according to a report from the U.S. National Cancer Institute.

The surge in cost will be largely driven by an aging population that is expected to develop more cases of cancer in the near-term. And projected costs could go even higher if the price tag for care rises faster than expected.

"This reflects only the aging and growth of the U.S. population," said lead researcher Angela Mariotto, chief of the Data Modeling Branch in the National Cancer Institute's Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences. She described the 2020 cost estimate as "on the low side."

Cancer is a disease of aging and the population of elderly Americans is expected to rise from 40 million in 2009 to 70 million by 2030. Improvements in screening mean cancer is becoming more identifiable and treatable, but therapies are becoming increasingly expensive.

"If the trend in incidence, survival and cost continue as they have been, then the estimates could be as high as $207 billion by 2020," Mariotto said. "That's an assumption that the cost of treatment will grow annually at a 5 percent rate," she added.

The report is published online Jan. 12 and in the Jan. 19 print issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

To estimate the cost of cancer treatment, Mariotto's team looked at data on 13 cancers in men and 16 in women. Tracking the rate of these cancers and the current costs to treat them in 2010, they were able to project costs in 2020. In these calculations they assumed that costs would rise by only 2 percent a year.

The largest increases in cost over the period will be for breast cancer at 32 percent and prostate cancer at 42 percent, simply because more people will be living longer with these diseases, the researchers noted.

For example, while the cost of treating breast cancer remains relatively low (compared to other tumor types), by 2020 this cancer will incur the highest costs -- about $20.5 billion -- since there are expected to be many more women living with the disease.

The new projections do not take into account other costs associated with cancer, such as screening and other prevention measures, Mariotto noted.

"These rising costs raise a challenge for both the federal government and for the private sector," she believes. The new data could help policymakers set priorities for managing new treatments and diagnostic technologies, she added.

Commenting on the study, Elizabeth Ward, the national vice president for Intramural Research at the American Cancer Society, said that "a big component of the rise in cost is just the growth and aging of the population. We are just going to have more people developing cancer and under treatment for cancer," she said.

And while many new treatments do cost more, there's debate on whether the cost is always worth the benefit, Ward said.

"Most individuals in our society value human life enough to say it's probably worth it," Ward said. "I think where you get more debate, if a treatment only extends life only four weeks [for example]. That's on the borderline," she said.

More information

For more information on the cost of cancer, visit the U.S. National Cancer Institute.

SOURCES: Angela Mariotto, Ph.D., chief, Data Modeling Branch, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, U.S. National Cancer Institute; Elizabeth Ward, Ph.D., national vice president, Intramural Research, American Cancer Society; Jan. 12, 2011, Journal of the National Cancer Institute, online

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. New molecular imaging technologies for detecting cellular processes
2. Clinical decision support systems help control inappropriate medical imaging, study suggests
3. Medicare payments for medical imaging are higher to nonradiologist physicians than to radiologists
4. U-M study: Kids frequently exposed to medical imaging procedures that use radiation
5. Brain Imaging May Predict Dyslexia Gains
6. UCSF fountain of youth pill could restore aging immune system
7. Novel imaging technique may reduce lymphedema in breast cancer patients
8. Breast CT imaging system marches forward as pain-free tool to aid mammograms
9. Better imaging from bench to bedside
10. Expert panel addresses safety in medical imaging
11. Imaging May Reveal Sports-Related Brain Disorder at Early Stage
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Aging Population Could Send Cancer Costs Soaring
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... ... The Catalent Applied Drug Delivery Institute today announced a ... selection in early phase drug development. The first of these is to be ... UK’s emerging life sciences companies, corporate partners, and investors, at Milton Park, Oxford, ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... , ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... medical opinion process, participated in the 61st annual Employee Benefits Conference. The Employee ... took place Sunday, November 8th through Wednesday, November 11th, 2015. The conference was ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... Indosoft Inc., developer and ... an application server to improve system efficiency and reliability. , The new Q-Suite 6 ... these standards, the system avoids locking itself into a specific piece of software for ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... , ... The holiday season is jam-packed with family dinners, ... attendees is of the utmost importance. Whether you are cooking at home for ... a try this holiday season. , Turkey Croquettes ,     Ingredients: , ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... 2015 , ... TyloHelo Inc , North America’s largest ... accessories help improve the bather experience in the sauna, and the accessories selected ... purist looking for simplicity in design to accessories that encourage a greater expression ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015 Allergan plc (NYSE: ... Rugen Therapeutics, a start-up  biotechnology company focused on ... disorders and funded by the F-Prime Biomedical Research ... into an exclusive collaboration to support the discovery ... Disorders (ASD) and Obsessive Compulsive disorders (OCD). ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015 USP 800 applies to all ... pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, nurses, physicians, physician assistants, home ... also covers all entities which store, prepare, transport, ... healthcare institutions, patient treatment clinics, physicians, practice facilities, ... --> What is the purpose of ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015 Asia -based ... BioLight and the New Investors will make a direct ... a private placement. The financing will help IOPtima to ... used in the treatment of glaucoma, as well as ... IOPtimate™ system with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: