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Canadian Cancer Society Statistics

Canadian Cancer Society Statistics

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Published by: uncleadolph on Nov 27, 2011
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Members of the Steering Committee on Cancer Statistics
Heather Chappell (Chair), MSc, CHE
Cancer Control Policy, Canadian Cancer Society, Toronto, Ontario
Prithwish De, PhD
Cancer Control Policy, Canadian Cancer Society, Toronto, Ontario
Dagny Dryer, MD, FRCPC
PEI Cancer Treatment Centre and Cancer Registry, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
Larry Ellison, MSc
Health Statistics Division, Statistics Canada, Ottawa, Ontario
Heather Logan, RN, BScN, MHSc, CHE
Canadian Association of Provincial Cancer Agencies, Toronto, Ontario
Maureen MacIntyre, MHSA
Surveillance and Epidemiology Unit, Cancer Care Nova Scotia, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Loraine Marrett, PhD
Prevention and Cancer Control, Cancer Care Ontario, Toronto, Ontario
Les Mery, MSc
Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control, Public Health Agency of Canada,Ottawa, Ontario
Hannah K. Weir, PhD
Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,Atlanta, Georgia
Analytic and statistical supportMichael Otterstatter, PhD
Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control, Public Health Agency of Canada,Ottawa, Ontario
Robert Semenciw, MSc
Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control, Public Health Agency of Canada,Ottawa, Ontario
Lin Xie, MSc (Statistics), MSc (MIS)
Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control, Public Health Agency of Canada,Ottawa, Ontario
Material appearing in this publication may be reproduced or copied without permission; however, the following citation must be used to indicate the source:Canadian Cancer Society’s Steering Committee on Cancer Statistics.
Canadian Cancer Statistics 2011
. Toronto, ON: Canadian Cancer Society; 2011.May 2011ISSN 0835-2976The development of this publication over the years has benefited considerably from thecomments and suggestions of readers. The Steering Committee appreciates and welcomes suchcomments. To be included on the distribution mailing list for next year’s publication or to offer ideas on how the publication can be improved, please complete the
Evaluation and order form
at the back of the publication or e-mail stats@cancer.ca.This publication is also available at www.cancer.ca/statistics. Additional copies may berequested from divisions of the Canadian Cancer Society or by calling the
Cancer InformationService
at 1 888 939-3333 (see
For further information
).La version française de cette publication est disponible sur demande.
hinking back 25 years ago to the mid-1980s, readers may find it hard to realize the paucity of readily available cancer statistics in Canada at that time. The NationalCancer Incidence Reporting System (NCIRS), established in 1969, was hard-pressedto produce the actual data reported from provincial cancer registries within five yearsof the reference year. While these highly detailed data were published by StatisticsCanada in
Cancer in Canada,
the national totals lacked information from one largeCanadian province. Little wonder that most Canadians in the cancer field quotedcurrent year statistical estimates from the United States
Ironically, the US estimateswere based on data from the US Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER)Program, which at the time covered only about 10% of the US population. In contrast,Canada had excellent coverage of cancer registration for the entire population, but theavailable data were not being used to best advantage.Frustration with the lack of timeliness in reporting actual data was widespread amongthose responsible for compiling cancer statistics in Canada. Thus, when Dr. Bob MacBethof the National Cancer Institute of Canada/Canadian Cancer Society (NCIC/CCS)approached Statistics Canada in 1985 with the concept of developing estimates for Canadian data based on the US model, staff at Statistics Canada were keen to getinvolved. A Steering Committee was formed to give the project scientific and politicallegitimacy, and it represented an early example of partnership in cancer control, includingmembers from the Alberta Cancer Registry, Health and Welfare Canada, CanadianCancer Society, Fichier des tumeurs du Québec and Statistics Canada. Members enthu-siastically contributed data from various sources, all with the aim of providing the best possible overview of the cancer situation in Canada. Funding for Steering Committeemeetings and printing and dissemination costs was provided by the Society.When I arrived at Statistics Canada in December 1985 on a temporary assignment asProject Manager, Disease Registries, work had already begun to develop themethodology to produce the cancer estimates. My role was to serve as managingeditor for the first 10 years of the publication, and what an exciting 10 years they werefor the development of cancer statistics in Canada. The first current year estimateswere produced for 1986; however, by the time the estimates were reviewed, 1986 washalf over, so the Steering Committee prudently recommended to postpone publication.The first issue of 
Canadian Cancer Statistics,
a mere 32 pages, was published in 1987.The publication was an instant success, with front-page coverage in leadingnewspapers headlining the fact that just over one in three Canadians would developsome form of cancer during their lifetime. Over the first few years, the scope of content grew to include age and sex distributions, childhood cancer, as well as a widerange of annual special topics. In 1991, the special topic of smoking and lung cancer was particularly relevant as the release of this issue coincided with a major court casein Quebec involving cigarette companies and garnered considerable attention from thenational news media. By this time,
Canadian Cancer Statistics
was well established asa responsive, user-friendly and authoritative source of national statistics for Canadaand had become a major vehicle for disseminating not only basic statisticalinformation but also related information useful for cancer control.Data sources have improved considerably over the past 25 years, largely due to theevolution of the patient-oriented Canadian Cancer Registry (CCR) from the event-oriented NCIRS. Development of the CCR required considerable cooperation andcollaboration among Statistics Canada and the provincial/territorial cancer registriesfor more than a decade between 1987 and 1997.
Canadian Cancer Society:
Canadian Cancer Statistics 2011

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