U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations Tool
This video provides an overview of how to navigate the USCS Data Visualizations Tool.
The U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations tool displays the official federal statistics on cancer from each central cancer registry meeting data quality criteria. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) National Program of Cancer Registries (NPCR) and the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI’s) Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program combine their cancer incidence data sources to produce these statistics. Mortality data are from CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) National Vital Statistics System (NVSS).
What data does the U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations tool contain?
The U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations tool displays the official federal cancer statistics. This tool provides incidence and death counts, rates, stage distribution, and trend data; survival and prevalence estimates; and state-, county-, and congressional district data in a user-driven format. It includes incidence data on more than 1.6 million cases of invasive cancer diagnosed each year. The population coverage may vary due to suppression (for example, if 16 or fewer incidence cases were reported or if the state requested suppression), or if a state did not meet USCS publication criteria. For the most recent release, data from 97% of the U.S. population are displayed for cancer cases diagnosed in 2020 alone and the most recent 5 years combined (2016 to 2020). Cancer incidence data are not available from Indiana and Nevada for 2020.
The tool also includes malignant cancer mortality data from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico as recorded in the NVSS. Mortality data are available for 100% of the U.S. population.
Incidence and mortality data are available for the nation and by state, congressional district, and county. Cancer incidence and mortality trend data are presented from 1999 through 2020. The most recent year for which incidence data are available is 2020. Cancer mortality data for 2021 are available and can be accessed through the NVSS.
The tool also presents national and state survival and prevalence estimates, which are based on NPCR data covering 83% of the U.S. population. The tool also includes information about the prevalence of risk factors related to cancer, use of cancer screening tests, and status of human papillomavirus (HPV) immunization.
How can the data be used?
These data can be used to monitor cancer trends over time, determine cancer patterns in various populations, guide planning and evaluation of cancer control programs, help set priorities for allocating health resources, and provide information for a national database of cancer incidence.
What was the effect of COVID-19 on cancer incidence data for diagnosis year 2020?
In March 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic. Soon after, stay-at-home orders, business and school shutdowns, and travel advisories were implemented in the United States to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Additionally, some health care systems reduced access to routine care. These measures, along with concerns about getting COVID-19, interrupted cancer screening, diagnosis, and care as people postponed or deferred health care visits, particularly from March to May 2020.
The 2022 data submission includes new cancer cases diagnosed in 2020, the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. The missed cancer diagnoses resulting from disruptions in health services and delayed reporting of data to some central cancer registries caused by the pandemic may have contributed to an observed decline in incidence for most cancer sites in 2020.4 Caution must be taken when including the 2020 incidence data point in trend models to avoid incorrect interpretations of the effect of cancer prevention and early detection efforts. Observed downward trends may be due largely to the lower observed incidence in 2020.
What cautions should be used in interpreting differences by race and ethnicity?
Use caution when interpreting differences in rates among racial and ethnic (Hispanic origin) populations. A study using SEER data suggests that the quality of race data in cancer registries is considered excellent for White, Black, Asian, and Pacific Islander people, and substantial for Hispanic people, while data for American Indian and Alaska Native people has been shown to be considerably underreported. A study involving cancer mortality data shows that death rates for White and Black people are generally reliable, whereas death rates for Asian and Pacific Islander, American Indian and Alaska Native, and Hispanic people are underestimated.
Therefore, incidence and mortality data in the Data Visualizations tool may be underestimated for Asian and Pacific Islander, American Indian and Alaska Native, and Hispanic people, possibly due to racial and Hispanic origin misclassification. NCHS is working with states to improve the reporting of race and ethnicity on death certificates.
To better represent U.S. populations and to improve racial classification, data in the U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations tool are restricted to non-Hispanic people for White, Black, Asian and Pacific Islander, and American Indian and Alaska Native people.
To further improve the accuracy of cancer burden estimates among the American Indian and Alaska Native population, the following methods are applied to U.S. Cancer Statistics data in the Data Visualizations tool—
- The data presented in the tool are linked with Indian Health Service (IHS) administrative records to improve the race classification.
- The data are restricted to non-Hispanic populations.
- The data presented in the tool’s American Indian and Alaska Native restricted to PRCDA only module are restricted to IHS Purchased/Referred Care Delivery Areas (PRCDA).
Grouping racial or Hispanic origin subpopulations into one racial or Hispanic origin population can mask differences in subpopulations. Asian, Pacific Islander, American Indian, Alaska Native, and Hispanic people are not homogeneous groups. The subpopulations are grouped into single populations because of small numbers or concerns regarding the possible misclassification of race and Hispanic origin among the subpopulations. Cancer rates by more detailed categories of race have been published.1–3
Additional information is available in the Data Visualizations tool’s Technical Notes, Interpreting Race and Ethnicity in Cancer Data.
What cautions can be used in interpreting rates by congressional districts?
The cancer incidence and death counts and rates presented in the Congressional District Estimates tab are estimated using county-level data because direct measures on congressional district-level data are not available. Please be mindful that these are estimated counts and rates, and they are not meant to be compared across congressional districts.
Since the congressional district estimates were calculated using county-level data, if any county-level data are missing, then the overall state counts presented in the Congressional District Estimates tab will not match the counts in the U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations tool’s At a Glance and State and County tabs. Instead, the counts in the Congressional District Estimates tab will match the state counts calculated by aggregating across the county-level case counts.
Whom can I contact for questions about the U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations tool?
Please email U.S. Cancer Statistics staff at email@example.com.
U.S. Cancer Statistics Working Group. U.S. Cancer Statistics Data Visualizations Tool, based on 2022 submission data (1999–2020): U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Cancer Institute; www.cdc.gov/cancer/dataviz, released in June 2023.
1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. United States Cancer Statistics: Highlights from 2020 Incidence and Mortality. USCS Data Brief, no. 35. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Department of Health and Human Services; 2023.
2Thompson CA, Gomez SL, Hastings KG, Kapphahn K, Yu P, Shariff-Marco S, Bhatt AS, Wakelee HA, Patel MI, Cullen MR, Palaniappan LP. The burden of cancer in Asian Americans: a report of national mortality trends by Asian ethnicity. Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers, and Prevention 2016;25(10):1371–1382. DOI: 0.1158/1055-9965.EPI-16-0167.
3Liu L, Noone AM, Gomez SL, Scoppa S, Gibson JT, Lichtensztajn D, Fish K, Wilkens LR, Goodman MT, Morris C, Kwong S, Deapen D, Miller BA. Cancer incidence trends among native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders in the U.S., 1990–2008. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 2013;105(15):1086–1095. DOI: 10.1093/jnci/djt156.
4Gomez SL, Noone AM, Lichtensztajn DY, Scoppa S, Gibson JT, Liu L, Morris C, Kwong S, Fish K, Wilkens LR, Goodman MT, Deapen D, Miller BA. Cancer incidence trends among Asian American populations in the United States, 1990–2008. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 2013;105:1096–1110. DOI: 10.1093/jnci/djt157.
Download pre-analyzed data tables from the Data Visualizations tool or the U.S. Cancer Statistics Web-based Report in delimited ASCII format.
U.S. Cancer Statistics data are updated each year. Cancer registries submit data for the new diagnosis year and update previously submitted data as needed. Federal agencies in turn update their cancer incidence statistics with each data submission, for the newly submitted year and other submitted years as well. Users of cancer incidence data should be mindful of the data submission date for all data used in their comparisons. Download archived reports and related technical notes for the Data Visualizations tool or the U.S. Cancer Statistics Web-based Report.