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World Cancer Day

Photo of diverse hands holding a globe

World Cancer Day unites the world in the fight against cancer.

On February 4, CDC joins people, organizations, and government agencies around the world in exploring how everyone can help prevent and control cancer.

Just as cancer affects everyone in different ways, everyone has a role to play to reduce the impact of the disease on individuals, families, and communities. World Cancer Day is a chance to reflect on what you can do to take action. Whatever you choose to do, “We can. I can.” make a difference in the fight against cancer.

Global Progress Against Cancer

New Report

The World Health Organization recently published a new comprehensive analysis [PDF-1.3MB] of global health trends since 2000 and an assessment of the challenges for the next 15 years. Chapter 6 of the report focuses on non-communicable diseases, including cancer. Positive developments included reducing tobacco use and improving early detection, diagnosis, and treatment in both high-income and developing countries. But challenges remain, particularly lack of access to timely cancer diagnosis and treatment, lack of exercise and healthy foods, and increasing costs.

Cervical Cancer in Thailand

Thailand’s national cervical cancer screening program is meeting its goals. A 2010 survey shows that 67% of women between the ages of 30 and 60 years have been screened for cervical cancer in the last five years, exceeding the 2011 goal of 60%. Thailand appears to be on track to meet its next national goal of screening 80% of eligible women.

What CDC Is Doing

Photo of hospital staff at a cancer center in Viet Nam collecting data from stacks of medical records.

Hospital staff at a cancer center in Viet Nam collect data from stacks of medical records.

While most of CDC’s cancer programs focus on the United States, CDC’s Office of International Cancer Control is also working on activities to prevent and control cancer around the world, which benefits everyone. The lessons learned with our international partners also benefit domestic cancer programs.

Cancer Registries

Cancer registries provide information about cancer cases and deaths that helps public health professionals, researchers, and policy makers plan and evaluate cancer control programs, and set priorities for allocating health resources. But in low- and middle-income countries, where more than 60% of the world’s cancer cases and about 70% of cancer deaths occur, high-quality cancer registries cover less than 10% of the population. CDC is working with partners to set up cancer registries in the Caribbean, India, and Africa.

International Registry Costing Tool

In 2013, CDC started a project to help other countries adapt a U.S.-based cost assessment tool. The Web-based International Registry Costing Tool will help low- and middle-income countries estimate the resources needed to start and improve cancer and cardiovascular registries, making sure they provide high-quality data. Registries in Barbados, Colombia, India, Kenya, and Uganda are testing the tool.

Cancer Curriculum

CDC developed training materials to help public health professionals and health educators in low- and middle-income countries prevent and control cancer in a variety of ways. The materials were tested in Morocco and India in 2015.

Survey of Health Care Providers in Brazil About Colorectal Cancer Screening

This study aimed to understand colorectal cancer screening knowledge, attitudes, and practices of providers in the Brazilian network of primary health care units. It found that most doctors and nurses in Brazil know colorectal cancer screening saves lives, but almost half of doctors did not offer colorectal cancer screening tests to their patients.

Survey of Women in China About Cervical Cancer Screening

This study reports the results of a survey asking women in China if they had been screened for cervical cancer with a Pap test. It found that 21% of women had received a Pap test. The women most likely to be screened were 30 to 49 years old, had a higher education, were married, and had urban health insurance.

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