Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide. In 2016, it accounted for 1.2 million deaths across the EU, which equals 25.7% of the total number of deaths. The highest cancer mortality rates were concentrated in the eastern EU Member States.
EUROSTAT, the statistical office of the EU, has recently published the latest edition of its regional yearbook that provides a detailed and complex analysis of a broad range of statistical topics across the EU, showing its diversity in terms of various subjects, such as population, health, education, the labour market, living conditions, the economy, business, research, innovation, and tourism.
This yearbook also gives an overview of recent statistics on causes of death in the European Union (EU). Although major advances have been made in cancer treatment, and survival rates are increasing, it still remains a leading cause of death. Approximately two-fifths of the people living in the EU are diagnosed with some type of cancer during their lives. In 2016, the standardised death rate from cancer was 257 per 100,000 inhabitants across the EU, and the eastern Member States had the highest cancer death rates.
The map also shows that
there were only three countries across the continent where all of the NUTS level 2 regions had rates above 300 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants: Hungary, Croatia, and Slovenia.
Unfortunately, this is not the only ranking in which Hungary occupies a leading position. EUROSTAT also examined the total number of cancer deaths in the age category below 65 years, and the eastern and Baltic Member States had the worst results once again.
The highest cancer death rate was recorded in Northern Hungary: 147 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, which was more than three times as high as the lowest rate recorded in Övre Norrland (Sweden),
As far as the breakdown by different cancer types is concerned, lung cancer and colorectal cancer were the most common cancers in the EU, alongside gender-specific cancers. Unfortunately, the analysis of the NUTS level 2 regions shows a similar pattern: the regional death rate for lung cancer was the highest in Hungary and Poland.
As Figure 2.4 shows,
all of the 8 Hungarian regions are among the EU regions with the highest death rates from cancer, and 7 have the highest death rates from lung cancer and colorectal cancer.
Source: ec.europa.eu, portfolio.hu