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Health at a Glance 2011

OECD Indicators

image of Health at a Glance 2011

This sixth edition of Health at a Glance provides the latest comparable data on different aspects of the performance of health systems in OECD countries. It provides striking evidence of large variations across countries in the costs, activities and results of health systems. Key indicators provide information on health status, the determinants of health, health care activities and health expenditure and financing in OECD countries.   Each indicator in the book is presented in a user-friendly format, consisting of charts illustrating variations across countries and over time, brief descriptive analyses highlighting the major findings conveyed by the data, and a methodological box on the definition of the indicator and any limitations in data comparability.

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Survival and mortality for colorectal cancer

Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed form of cancer worldwide, after lung and breast cancer, with approximately one million new cases diagnosed per year (Parkin et al., 2005). There are several factors that place certain individuals at increased risk for the disease, including age, the presence of polyps, ulcerative colitis, a diet high in fat, and genetic background. The disease is more common in the United States and Europe, and is rare in Asia. In Asian countries where people are gradually adopting western diets, such as Japan, the incidence of colorectal cancer is increasing (IARC, 2011). It is estimated that approximately 610 000 people worldwide died due to colorectal cancer in 2008 (WHO, 2011d). Total spending on the treatment of colorectal cancer in the United States is estimated to reach USD 14 billion per year (Mariotto et al., 2011). Two indicators are presented to reflect variation in outcomes for patients with colorectal cancer across OECD countries: five-year relative survival rates and mortality rates.

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