Cancer profile (2023)

The cancer profile 2023 is a series of chapters summarising many different components of cancer in Suffolk. Sections include: incidence, survival, mortality, earlier diagnosis and additional chapters on specific cancer types, childhood cancer, and inequality and cancer.

There is also an accompanying executive summary slide deck with a series of key points made within the published chapters.

Key points:

  1. Overall cancer incidence and mortality rates in Suffolk are lower than the England average.
  2. Screening programmes in Suffolk for breast, cervical and bowel cancers have higher uptake than the England average, although over 1 in 4 eligible Suffolk residents are not completing screening when invited (across all three screening pathways).
  3. Since March 2020, around 34,000 fewer people in England have been diagnosed with cancer and started treatment compared to predictions. This is thought to be due to lack of access to screening and diagnostics services during the pandemic – it is necessary to find these lost diagnoses within Suffolk.
  4. Prostate cancer incidence rates for the county are statistically significantly higher than the England average.
  5. Cancer incidence is more common in older adults – while Suffolk has a lower age-standardised incidence rate than England, with a forecasted increase to the population of older adults in the next 20 years, there will be increased demand for Suffolk’s cancer services.
  6. Early identification of cancer (at stage one or two) is an NHS target – however, in Suffolk there has been no statistically significant improvement to early cancer diagnosis since 2013.
  7. Inequalities within cancer are systematic differences between social groups. It is estimated by Cancer Research that 20,000 additional new cases of cancer each year are in the most deprived areas of the UK, with 247 excess deaths from cancer in Suffolk in 2020/21 associated with existing inequalities.
  8. An individual’s risk of cancer depends on many different things. The burden on cancer services in Suffolk could be reduced by influencing risk factors. These risk factors include adult excess weight, smoking or consuming tobacco, alcohol consumption, and dietary choices.

Additional chapters