Cancer is biggest killer in Harborough district, figures reveal

Peterborough City Hospital. One of the four bed  ward rooms.  Photo: SM101110-017ow.jpg
Peterborough City Hospital. One of the four bed ward rooms. Photo: SM101110-017ow.jpg

Cancer kills more people in the Harborough district than any other condition.

Newly-released data from Public Health England has revealed that, of 783 deaths registered, 239 people died from the disease in 2016, the most recent period for which data has been released.

The number represents 30.5 per cent of the deaths in Harborough, although the proportion is down from 32.1 per cent in 2011.

It is also higher than the rate for England, where 28 per cent of the deaths were caused by all cancers in 2016.

Helen Rippon, Chief Executive of Worldwide Cancer Research, reckons the lower mortality rate from cancer in the country is a consequence of better tests and treatments, but there is still work to be done.

She said: “Some types of cancer have benefitted incredibly from research, with a person’s chance of survival pushing upwards of 90%. Others have not fared as well and survival rates are still as low as they were in 1970. Historically, less funding has been given to some types of cancer, which somewhat explains the discrepancies in survival rates.

“The proportion of deaths caused by cancer in the UK is slightly higher than seen in Europe as a whole, where cancer accounts for 20% of all deaths. To understand why some places may have higher or lower numbers of people dying from cancer you need to be able to take everything into account, including dietary, lifestyle and environmental factors.”

After cancer, circulatory diseases, like hypertension, was the second deadliest illness in Harborough. About 25.7 per cent of the deaths were caused by this condition.

Jacob West, Director of Healthcare Innovation at the British Heart Foundation, said the national trend is down to the advancements in treating conditions.