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Cancer responsible for 30% of deaths in Ireland


Cancer is the “single biggest killer” in Ireland with more than 9,600 deaths a year, according to a new report.

The report from the European Cancer Organisation (ECO) and the Irish Cancer Society found that the disease is responsible for 30% of deaths in the country each year.

The ECO said its data from its online repository, the European Cancer Pulse, “captures evidence of progress but also highlights areas that need scrutiny, particularly those around cancer inequalities”.

It said Ireland “needs to be more ambitious in preventing cancer”.

The report said while the country is “doing well on HPV vaccination, it is falling behind on its targets for tobacco and alcohol consumption”.

The report was launched during the Joint Euro-American Forum on Cancer at Farmleigh House in Dublin.

Speaking at the event, Irish Cancer Society CEO Averil Power said: “We know that people across the country do not have equal access to cancer care and services in Ireland.

“Inequality between public and private patients is growing, particularly in terms of access to new medicines.

“The lack of Government investment in Ireland’s current National Cancer Strategy means target waiting times for cancer tests are consistently being exceeded.

“Those who cannot afford to go private are too often left languishing on long waiting lists, getting more anxious with each day that passes.”

Professor of Digital Health at Queen’s University Belfast and co-lead of the All Island Cancer Research Institute Mark Lawler said: “The data presented here as part of the European Cancer Pulse highlight the significant cancer inequalities faced by people living in the most deprived areas of Ireland.

“Given our previous work, it is quite likely that the impact of Covid-19, as well as the Government’s failure to provide any new recurrent development funding for the National Cancer Strategy in 2023 or 2024 has widened this 9% survival gap even further.”


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