Risk of Dying from Cancer in US Can Depend on Where You Live, Study Finds

Risk of Dying from Cancer in US Can Depend on Where You Live, Study Finds
Where people live in the United States may be decisive in determining whether or not they survive a cancer, new research suggests. For example, mortality rates among women with breast cancer were much higher  in three counties in Mississippi, and two in Louisiana, in 2014 than for women residing in three counties in Colorado. The study,  “Trends and patterns of disparities in cancer mortality among US counties, 1980-2014,” was recently published in JAMA. The study examined mortality rates for 29 types of cancer — including lung, breast and prostate cancer — in some 3,000 U.S. counties and cities between 1980 and 2014. Overall, it reported a 20 percent decline in national mortality rates in all cancers combined, but an increase in death rates in 160 counties over those same years. These findings, the researchers said, raised questions about access to care, and cancer prevention and treatment efforts. "Such significant disparities among US counties is unacceptable," Ali Mokdad, MD, the study's lead author a professor of Global Health at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington, in Seattle, said in a press release. "Every person should have access to early screenings for cancer, as well as adequate treatment." Breast cancer mortality rates, like that of cancer overall, have decrease since 1980, but clusters of high rates were found in certain counties along the Mississippi River. The lowest rates were observed in parts of the West, Midwest and Northeast. These five counties with
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