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Cancer deaths on steady decline

Words by Smiley Team

Cancer research and treatment have been steadily improving, and cancer death rates in the US have been falling. In fact, cancer deaths have been steadily declining for almost 30 years. 

A report from the American Association for Cancer Research has shown that the steady trend has only quickened in recent years. There are now more than 18 million cancer survivors in the U.S., up from 3 million in 1971.

“Basic research discoveries have driven the remarkable advances that we’ve seen in cancer medicine in recent years,” said AACR President Lisa M. Coussens, PhD, FAACR. “Targeted therapies, immunotherapy, and other new therapeutic approaches being applied clinically all stem from fundamental discoveries in basic science. Investment in cancer science, as well as support for science education at all levels, is absolutely essential to drive the next wave of discoveries and accelerate progress.”

The things researchers are discovering are only improving the odds of surviving a cancer diagnosis. 

“This is a really exciting time in cancer management,” said Dr. Stephen Ansell, the senior deputy director for the Midwest at the Mayo Clinic Comprehensive Cancer Center in Rochester, Minnesota, who wasn’t involved with the report. “We see the death rate from cancer keeps going down.”

As cancer deaths have trended downward President Biden relaunched the “Cancer Moonshot” program, which first saw light under the Obama administration with the goal of eradicating the disease which still takes over 600,000 lives a year in the US alone. 

“Despite all the progress, there’s still a sense of powerlessness,” Biden said, who lost his own son to cancer. “Guilt that maybe you're not doing enough because you don't know enough.”

“We can end cancer as we know it,” Biden said. “This is a presidential White House priority.”

Inspired to Act?

DONATE: You can donate to the American Association of Cancer Research if you want to help support more of their research.

SUPPORT: Recommend family and friends get regularly screened for diseases like cancer. The best treatment is to nip it in the bud as early as possible.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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