During 2020, Fewer Cancer Diagnoses Were Made In England


According to brand-new data from NHS Digital, the number of new malignant cancer diagnoses in England declined from 327,174 in 2019 to 288,753 in 2020. The publication Cancer Registration Statistics, England, 2020 contains data on malignancies that were newly discovered during the calendar year 2020. Breakdowns were made based on location, gender, age group, deprivation, and stage of the diagnosis.

288,753 new cancer diagnoses were recorded in 2020, which is 38,421 fewer than in 2019. In the meantime, the daily average for new diagnoses decreased from 896 in 2019 to 789 the year after. Prostate, breast, bowel, and lung cancers, the four most prevalent malignancies reported, remained to account for more than half (51%) of all diagnoses in 2020. Prostate cancer remained the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men (24% of all male diagnoses), with 148,210 male cancer diagnoses and registrations compared to 140,543 female diagnoses. The majority of female cancer diagnoses (28% of all female diagnoses) were still breast cancer.

The decline in diagnoses observed between 2019 and 2020 is unevenly distributed among the various malignancies. Prostate cancer cases decreased by 11,463 (24%), the most among male cancers, between 2019 and 2020. In total, breast cancer diagnoses decreased by 8,175 (17%), or the most amount of any disease, in females between 2019 and 2020. Melanoma saw the highest percentage shift among females in 2020, with a decline of 1,319 diagnoses, or 18%, from the previous year.

Deprivation increased cancer incidence for both groups, but males in the least deprivation areas had a greater rate of cancer incidence than females in the most deprivation areas, which was 554 per 100,000 for men and 550 per 100,000 for women.

Both males and females had an increase in cancer incidence rates with age. However, males showed greater incidence rates when they were 60 years old or older than females did between the ages of 15 and 59.