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Context: Two reports has been released by World Health Organization on World Cancer Day i.e., 5th February.

According to the reports 1 in 10 Indians (10%) will develop cancer during their lifetime, and 1 in 15 Indians (67%) would die of cancer.

Cancer Treatment in India; INDIATHINKERS
  • In 2018, India had an estimated 1.16 million new cancer cases, 7,84,000 deaths and 2.26 million five-year prevalent cases.
  • Globally, there were approx 9.6 million cancer deaths, out of which the most were due to lung cancer at 18.4%, followed by colorectum cancer (9.2%), stomach cancer (8.2%), liver (8.2%), breast (6.6%) and cancer of the oesophagus (5.3%).
  • The six most common cancer types in India are breast, at 1,62,000, followed by oral (1,20,000), cervical (97,000), lung (68,000) and stomach and colorectal, at 57,000 each. These accounted for 49% of all new cancer cases.
  • In case of men, of the 5,70,000 new cancer cases, oral cancer incidence was the highest at 92,000 followed by lung cancer at 49,000.
  • In case of women, of the 5,87,000 new cancer cases, breast cancer incidence was the highest at 1,62,000, followed by cervical at 97,000.
  • On a global scale, if the present trends continue, there will be a 60 % increase in cancer cases over the next two decades. 
About National Cancer Registry Programme (NCRP) 

The National Cancer Registry Programme had been launched by  Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in December 1981. It has been working on the objectives of collection of authentic data on cancer occurrence, undertaking epidemiological studies, developing human resource in cancer epidemiology and registration and helping National Cancer Control Program (NCCP) of our country in planning, monitoring and evaluation of cancer control activities. 

This began with a population based cancer registries (PBCRs) at BangaloreChennaiMumbai and hospital-based cancer registries (HBCRs) at ChandigarhDibrugarh, and Thiruvananthapuram

The NCRP, as of now, has a network of 28 population-based and 9 hospital-based cancer registries (HBCRs). The broad and overall objectives of the NCDIR is to sustain and develop a national research data-base on cancer, diabetes, CVD and Stroke through recent advances in electronic information technology with a national collaborative network, so as to undertake etiological, epidemiological, clinical studies and research in these areas.


  • The Government is implementing National Programme for Prevention and Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke (NPCDCS), with a focus on strengthening infrastructure, human resource development, health promotion & awareness generation, early diagnosis, management and referral to an appropriate level institution for treatment. In order to tackle the challenge of Non Communicable Diseases (NCD)including cancer, a total of 616 NCD Clinics at District level and 3,827 NCD Clinics at Community Health Centre level have been set up under NPCDCS.  
  • Population level initiative for prevention, control and screening for common NCDs (diabetes, hypertension and common cancers viz. oral, breast and cervical cancer) has also been rolled out under the National Health Mission (NHM) in over 215 districts. Under NHM support is provided to States/UTs to provide free essential medicines and diagnostic services for primary and secondary health care needs.
  • Screening of common NCDs including three common cancers i.e. oralbreast and cervical is also an integral part of service delivery under Ayushman Bharat - Health and Wellness Centres
  • Strengthening of Tertiary Care for Cancer Scheme, in order to enhance the facilities for tertiary care of cancer, is setting up of 19 State Cancer Institutes and 20 Tertiary Care Cancer Centres.  
  • Further, Oncology is also one of the focus areas in case of new AIIMS and many upgraded institutions under Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY). Setting up of National Cancer Institute at Jhajjar,Haryana and strengthening of Chittaranjan National Cancer Institute, Kolkata, are also steps in the same direction.
  • In Government hospitals, cancer treatment is either free or highly subsidized. Treatment of cancers is also available under Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY)
  • Besides this, Affordable Medicines and Reliable Implants for Treatment (AMRIT) Deendayal outlets have been opened at 195 Institutions/Hospitals with an objective to make available Cancer and Cardiovascular Diseases drugs and implants at discounted prices to the patients. 
  • Under the umbrella scheme of Rashtriya Arogya Nidhi, financial assistance is provided to families living below threshold poverty line for their treatment, including treatment of cancer, in Government hospitals.

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