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Medical expenditures for cancer are expected to increase 27% by 2020

Date January 18, 2011

A National Institute of Health analysis has found that medical expenditures for cancer are expected to increase 27% by 2020 – to at least $158 billion.  The highest costs are expected to be with “breast cancer ($16.5 billion), followed by colorectal cancer ($14 billion), lymphoma ($12 billion), lung cancer ($12 billion) and prostate cancer ($12 billion).”  According to the article, the new projections are higher than prior ones “largely because the researchers used the most recent data available — including Medicare claims data through 2006, which include payments for newer, more expensive, targeted therapies.”  Additionally, costs were analyzed by phase of care, “which revealed the higher costs of care associated with the first year of treatment and last year of life.”  More information is available at costprojections.cancer.gov.  (NIH News, 1/12, www.nih.gov/news/health/jan2011/nci-12.htm)

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