MHLU - Health Status Resource

Cancer

Cancer

Key Findings: 
  • Age-standardized cancer incidence rates increased significantly between 1988 and 2007 whereas the cancer mortality rates decreased over that same time period.
  • Note that the rate of mortality due to cancer was less than half of the rate of incidence of cancer in 2007 (Fig. 6.14 and Fig. 6.15).
  • There was no significant difference in incidence or mortality rates for all types of cancers between Middlesex-London, Ontario and Peer Group over that time period (Fig. 6.14 and Fig. 6.15).
  • Seniors were at the highest risk for developing cancer. Age-specific cancer rates increased exponentially over the lifespan (Fig. 6.16).

Cancer incidence rates in Ontario were significantly lower compared to Middlesex-London and the Peer Group in those aged 45 and older. (Fig. 6.16).

Interpretive Notes

Registry data is the most accurate and complete data source because it has a standardized method of data collection.  Registries legally require that all new cases of cancer (cancer incidence) and deaths due to cancer, detected through the healthcare system, be reported. The pitfall of registry data is that it is only collected for a few diseases, such as cancer.

How this Indicator was Calculated: 
Ontario Public Health Standard: 

Population Health Assessment and Surveillance Protocol - Section 1, Subsections b-iii, vii

Chronic Disease Prevention Standard - Requirement #1

Jargon Explained

Incidence Rate

The rate at which new events occur in the population in the given time period.

Moving average 

Method of smoothing irregularities in trend data, such as long term trends in incidence or mortality.  Moving averages make it easier to understand long-term trends in rates that otherwise might be masked by short-term fluctuations (Last, 4 ed).