Cancer is Both Deadly and Expensive
The American Cancer Society recently spoke out about the long term financial effects of cancer. They labeled it as the leading cause of death worldwide as well as one of the most expensive to manage and treat.
Other chronic conditions also increase the medical cost. This includes: heart disease and diabetes. Heart disease has been the number one cause of death for the last several years. But, it has been forecasted over the last decade or more that cancer would eventually surpass heart disease and it appears that it has.
Another apparant concern is the actual money that is set aside or provided by both the public and private funding for cancer. The belief is that a relatively small amount of money is used to improve cancer prevention and management. A large amount of money is spent on behalf of treatment and management. The two sides are not proportional to each other.
Other diseases such as flu, AIDs and malaria have a much larger amount set aside for them. The reasoning is that the fear that these conditions cause urges public opinion and public spending. These types of conditions are transmitted or acquired through a host or another person. This raises the fear and brings in a larger portion of the economic dollar.
Cancer’s economic toll was $895 billion in 2008 and this is equivalent to approximately 1.5 percent of the world’s gross domestic product. This dollar amount represents the disability and years of life lost. This specific report does not account for the cost of treating the disease.
But, how can we make strides in this category? Certain medical conditions can be preventable including: lung cancers, cardiac heart disease , smoking related conditions, alcohol abuse, and others. Some can be detected earlier but than often, the cost would increase dramatically as well. It is estimated that lung cancer alone accounts for almost $200 billion of the $900 billion of money spent on cancers. This large amount is very interesting and an important topic to many researches on cancer.
Heart disease is not a distant second in terms of deaths and financial obligations. It is estimated that heart disease accounts for some $750 billion per year worldwide.