Cancer statistics for African-Americans, 2016

February 22, 2016

ATLANTA - February 22, 2016- A new report outlines substantial progress in reducing the mortality gap between blacks and whites for some cancers, while the gap has widened or remained level for two leading cancers: breast cancer in women and colorectal cancer in men.

The findings are included in Cancer Statistics for African Americans, 2016, appearing in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. The report and its consumer version, Cancer Facts & Figures for African Americans 2016-2018, provide the most recent data on cancer incidence, mortality, survival, screening, and risk factors for cancers in African Americans.

A continuous reduction in cancer death rates in blacks since the early 1990s has resulted in more than 300,000 cancer deaths averted over the past two decades. Death rates have dropped faster during the most recent time period in blacks than in whites for all cancers combined and for lung, prostate, and colorectal cancer (in women only). As a result, racial disparities for these cancers have narrowed. In contrast, the racial disparity has widened for breast cancer in women and remained constant for colorectal cancer in men, likely due to inequalities in access to care, including screening and treatment.

Additional findings from the 2016 report: "It has long been recognized that these gaps in mortality and survival largely reflect socioeconomic disparities," said Carol DeSantis, MPH, lead author of the report. "But while some studies suggest that blacks who receive cancer treatment and medical care similar to that of whites experience similar outcomes, others report that racial disparities persist even after controlling for socioeconomic factors and access to care. The bottom line is accelerating progress in eliminating racial disparities requires equitable access to services for prevention, early detection, and high-quality treatment."

Article: Cancer Statistics for African Americans, 2016: Progress and Opportunities in Reducing Racial Disparities; CA Cancer J Clin 2016; doi: 10.3322/caac.21340

Study authored by: Carol E. DeSantis, MPH; Rebecca L. Siegel, MPH; Ann Goding-Sauer, MPH; Kimberly D. Miller, MPH; Stacey A. Fedewa, MPH; Kassandra I. Alcaraz, PhD, MPH; Ahmedin Jemal, DVM, PhD
-end-


American Cancer Society

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