Overall cancer mortality decreases during the pandemic, but inequalities widen for some cancers

A new publication by the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit (WCISU) at Public Health Wales has shown that the long term decrease in the cancer death rate has accelerated over the past two years.

The publication, Cancer Mortality in Wales 2002-2021, shows that while the long term decrease in overall cancer mortality – the rate at which people are dying of cancer – had started to slow, in 2019 and 2020 that decrease intensified, with a further sharp decrease to 2021.  Cancer remains one of the leading causes of death in Wales.

The gap in the overall cancer death rate between the most deprived and least deprived areas was wider during the latest decade than the previous one, rising from 40 per cent higher in 2002, to almost 55 per cent higher in 2021. However, overall, the gap didn’t change during the pandemic.

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