India’s cancer care facilities ‘highly inadequate’, says a report
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science, Technology and Environment headed by former Union Environment Minister, Jairam Ramesh was constituted to examine an expanded role for the Department of Atomic Energy, through the Tata Memorial Centre (TMC), to address India’s rising cancer burden. The committee submitted its report to Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu on 11 Nov. The Committee says the “systematic failure” to address the needs of patients contributes to a 20% higher mortality among Indian cancer patients than in countries with a “high” Human Development Index. India’s cancer burden is likely to increase from 13 lakh cases in 2018 to 17 lakh in 2035. The Committee will emphasized on the fact that mortality to incidence ratio of 0.68 in India is higher than that in very high human development index (HDI) countries (0.38) and high HDI countries (0.57). The International Agency for Research on Cancer expects India’s cancer burden to increase from an estimated incidence of 13 lakh cases in 2018 to about 17 lakh in 2035, and cancer deaths expected to rise from 8.8 lakh in 2018 to 13 lakh in 2035. Incidence of cancer is very high in all North Eastern States, as it is higher than the national average for several types of cancer, showing a consistently rising trend over the past few decades.