Cancer incidence in developing countries is increasing at a staggering rate. The disease now kills more people in those countries than malaria, AIDs and tuberculosis combined. But a Global Task Force on Expanded Access to Cancer Care and Control in Developing Countries (GTF.CCC) released a report in November (2011) showing that by using affordable and readily available drugs, more than 2.4 million lives could be saved each year.
While medical effort have increased survival from infectious diseases in developing countries, this has not been the same for cancer where the increased survival has meant a greater predisposition to contracting the illnesses of the richer countries, cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
According to the report of GTF.CCC, 26 out of 29 key drugs that could treat the most prevalent and curable cancers are now off-patient. People could receive a course of treatment for less than $100.
In Canada the survival rate for childhood leukemia is around 90%, In low-income countries it is around 10%. Access to drugs would increase this dramatically. A couple of hundred million dollars would treat all of these childhood leukemias.