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Cancer death rate in U.S. falls by largest single-year amount on record

13 Jan 2021

© Provided by Xinhua | Participants hold lanterns to attend the Light The Night Walk event in Manhattan, New York, the United States, Oct. 18, 2018. The event was held with more than a thousand participants here on Thursday to raise fund to support services, provide lifesaving treatments and pioneer cancer research. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)

"To see these continuing record declines in cancer mortality is very encouraging," says Rebecca Siegel.

NEW YORK, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) -- The death rate from cancer in the United States dropped by 2.4 percent from 2017 to 2018, the biggest single-year decline on record, the American Cancer Society said in its latest report.

It was the second year in a row with a record-setting drop, and the progress continues gains that have been made for more than a quarter of century, according to the report, in which researchers analyzed cancer mortality data from 1930 to 2018.

© Provided by Xinhua | Children sing songs during a charity performance in Santa Clara, the United States, May 12, 2018. A charity gala to raise fund for charity groups which provide aids to children with cancer or special needs was held here on Saturday. (Xinhua/Wu Xiaoling)

Overall, the cancer mortality rate has fallen by 31 percent since its peak in 1991, said the report, which was published online in the journal CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. The latest decline left the mortality rate at 149 deaths for every 100,000 people in the general population in 2018.

"To see these continuing record declines in cancer mortality is very encouraging," Rebecca Siegel, senior scientific director of surveillance research at the American Cancer Society and lead author of its new report, was quoted as saying.

Despite the gains, cancer remains the second leading cause of deaths in the country, after heart disease. In 2018, it was responsible for more than 599,000 deaths, the report said.

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