Report: Cancer rates continue to decline

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A report that studies national cancer statistics says cancer is on the decline.

The Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer says that all cancers for men and women from 2003 to 2007 continued to decline in the United States. The rate of new cancer diagnoses for men and women and the rate of cancer-related deaths also dropped.

"While this news is positive, there is still a great deal of work left to be done," said Edward Partridge, M.D., director of the University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Black men and women were shown to have the highest cancer-related death rates, but this same group showed the largest decline for the period between 1998 and 2007.

"It is especially gratifying to see the continued decline in cancer-death rates among black men and women; reducing cancer disparities has been a major focus of the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center for more than two decades," said Partridge, who also is president of the American Cancer Society national board of directors.

Alabama has one of the highest rates of cancer mortality in the nation. In 2010, Alabama had 23,640 new cases of cancer and lost 10,150 people to the disease.

Copyright 2011 WBRC. All rights reserved.