The number of people suffering from cancer is rising rapidly in Europe because the society is growing older. The situation is the worst in Hungary. Cancer takes the most healthy years from Hungarians, and its treatment is the most expensive in the country.

According to 444, cancer became the biggest adversary of the European people. Based on the newest study of the Swedish Institute for Health Economics, the number of patients has risen by more than one million since 1995, and in the next 20 years, there will be an additional 775 thousand people suffering from it. Sadly, the number of those who died because of the disease rose by 20 pc, so

cancer causes every fourth death in Europe

nowadays, and it has become the leading cause of death in Denmark, France, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

This is partly because society is growing older, there are more fat people in European countries, alcohol consumption is also rising, and unhealthy sunbathing is very common as well. If healthcare systems cannot improve the quality of care and prevention,

the situation in this respect will get worse in the coming decades.

In 2018, Hungary was leading the list of those countries where the highest number of people were diagnosed with cancer (700/100,000). Denmark, Germany, and Italy follow, while the lowest rate is in Cyprus with only 400 cancer diagnosis per 100,000 people. Interestingly, most European men were diagnosed with lung cancer 20 years ago, but today, the leading cancer type is prostate cancer. Among women, breast cancer is the most common.

Taking into consideration the mortality rate, Hungary is in second place in Europe.

The rate of fatal cancer cases is higher only in Croatia (350/100,000). 

This rate is the lowest in Belgium and Iceland. Regarding the number of Disability Adjusted Life Years (= healthy years lost because of the illness), Hungary is in the first place in Europe with more than 80 years lost per 1,000 people. Of course, that fact has a serious economic effect because these people need treatment (surgeries, doctors, nurses, rehab), and they lose a lot of working hours. Hungary leads the list of the countries spending the highest rate of their healthcare budget on cancer treatment. Finally, Hungary is in the worst place regarding the potential years of working life lost (PYWLL) index as well.

A bit more than 1,000 working years are lost per 100,000 people.

Estimates say that 40-45 pc of the cancer cases could be prevented. Those taking part in the research of the Swedish Institute say that states should drive back smoking and should make HPV-vaccination obligatory for everyone (in Hungary, only girls get it starting from 2014). Furthermore, states should reduce regional and social inequalities in getting the best and newest treatments and medicines. 


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