While significant progress has been made in treating cancer since 1971 when President Nixon declared a "war on cancer," it still remains the second leading cause of death among Americans and may overtake cardiac deaths by 2010.
Number of Cases:
More than 1.2 million Americans develop cancer each year, with a new cancer diagnosed every 30 seconds in the United States. Since 1990, nearly 15 million new cancer cases have been diagnosed, excluding most carcinoma in situ (non-invasive cancer) and basal and squamous cell skin cancers.
Based on estimates of the National Institutes of Health, overall costs for cancer in the year 2000 were $180.2 billion: $60 billion for direct medical costs (total of all health expenditures); $15 billion for indirect morbidity costs (cost of lost productivity due to illness); and $105.2 billion for indirect mortality costs (cost of lost productivity due to premature death). This represents about 10 percent of the total amount spent on disease treatment in the United States.