Not only does cancer kill a lot of people–it costs a lot, too! Here is a report from a “think tank” site called U.S. Global Health Policy:

Cancer Is World’s Top ‘Economic Killer,’ Report Finds
Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Cancer, expected to emerge as the leading cause of death worldwide this year, is also the world’s top “economic killer,” according to an American Cancer Society/LIVESTRONG report the groups will present during a global cancer conference in China this week, the Associated Press reports.

“Cancer costs more in productivity and lost life than AIDS, malaria, the flu and other diseases that spread person-to-person, the report concludes,” the news service writes (Marchione, 8/16).

For the report, “researchers used computations taken from the World Health Organization that combine the death and disability dimensions of illness into a single summary, called a DALY (disability-adjusted life year), for 17 types of cancer as well as the 15 leading causes of death,” according to an American Cancer Society/LIVESTRONG press release (8/16). “Cancer’s economic toll was $895 billion in 2008 – equivalent to 1.5 percent of the world’s gross domestic product, the report says,” the AP continues (8/16).

“The economic toll from cancer … is nearly 20 percent higher than heart disease, the second leading cause of economic loss ($753 billion),” Press Trust of India/Business Standard reports, adding that researchers’ tally of the economic toll of cancer did not include the costs associated with treating the disease. Cancers of the lung, bronchus and trachea together account for the largest economic toll, totaling nearly $180 billion worldwide, according to the news service (8/17).

The article is quite detailed and extensive. Go to: Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report to learn more.
My only thought: Cancer takes an incredibly high toll–both in human and economic terms. I can only imagine what it might be like, living in a third world country with little or no cancer care. Pattie and I would most likely be dead! That’s a sobering thought.

Sorry if I darkened your day a bit. Now it’s time to feel good and keep smiling! Pat

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