China, India, and Russia that account for around 40 percent of the world's population, experience 46 percent of cancer worldwide. These countries also account for 52 percent of cancer deaths globally, according to a new research paper published in the Lancet journal.
In India, about 10 lakh people are diagnosed with cancer every year, out of which six to seven lakh face death. By 2035, these numbers are feared to increase by almost 12 lakh deaths per year.
India requires more number of cancer specialists, hospitals and cash flow for cancer research in order to change India's cancer graph, according to the paper.
"It's worrying that between 60% and 70% of our patients die earlier mainly because they seek treatment only after their disease has reached an advanced stage,'' said Dr. C.S. Pramesh from Tata Memorial Hospital, who is one of the authors.
"The worst aspect of India's cancer picture is poor life expectancy. Over 60% of cancer patients in the US enjoy an over five-year survival rate, but the corresponding figure for India is 30%," he added.
Though the incidence of cancer is relatively low in India compared to that in the US or Western Europe, the rate of death incidences is similar to these countries.
"India is a demographically young country. Even though rates of cancer are lower than in high-income countries, the absolute numbers still make this a massive public health burden, and in the next 20 to 30 years India will rapidly 'age' and catch up with the rates in other countries." TOI quoted Dr Richard from King's College and the lead author of the publication.