A new research led by Dr Jose Leal has revealed that the total annual cost related to cancer in the United kingdom is now 15.8 billion pounds every year. Out of that amount 2.4 billion pounds was spent on lung cancer. The amount spent on lung cancer alone beats any other form of disease.
The research findings have been presented at the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI). It showed that half of the total economic cost is due to premature death. That is estimated to about 7.6 billion pounds. The study says that the amount spent on each cancer individual is averaging 90 pounds. Cancer health cost itself is known to make about 35% which is 5.6 billion pounds.
In average, the amount spent on every cancer patient is 2,776 pounds a year. Lung cancer patient get the most of the cancer health care spending, averaging around 9,071 pounds each year. Breast cancer survivors receive around 1,076 pounds which is slightly lower than prostate cancer patient who gets 1,584 in health care. The total economic cost for breast cancer has been estimated to 1.5 billion pounds while 1.6 billion is spent on bowel cancer.
With an average of 9,071 pounds spent per patient, lung cancer is more costive than any other form of cancer. In total this represent about 60% of the economic cost. Dr Leal said it is mainly because of the fact that premature death occur, a lot of wages are lost in the process. About quarter of cancer related death occur before retirement. The actual death rate of the disease is estimated at 56 for every 100 000 people each year.
This is a proof that cancer affects the whole economy aside the health service. These figures show that if money is properly invested into research, cancer with the highest economic cost will also bring about a good return of investment.
The research led by Dr Leal has been recognized as vital because it helps understand the true cost of cancer in the UK. The study viewed on a broader scale, showed that cancer was the second most most deadly disease in Europe in 2009. It was second to cardiovascular diseases.
The cost of cancer to the EU is estimated to 124 billion Euros every year. That is 247 Euros per EU citizen. About 39% of the amount spent on health goes to cancer treatment alone. On the European scale, lung cancer is still prevalent as it accounts for 15% of the total cancer cost. It is followed by breast cancer representing 12% of the cost.
Based on those findings, Dr Leal suggests that the better understanding of the economic burden of cancer will lead to proper evaluation of public health policies. It will also give a better insight as to what to prioritize when it comes to funding research.
The fight for cancer is still ongoing. It will take an enormous effort from the scientific community to find a cure. That will also require a lot of funding. For the time being a lot of innocent lives are claimed by that condition. More effort has to be put into research.