News Column

Cancer Now Kills More U.S. Hispanics Than Heart Disease

June 4, 2013

Cancer is a word that no one wants to hear when talking about friends and family. But often someone we know is diagnosed with cancer. In fact, if you are Hispanic, you should know that according to the study Cancer Statistics for Hispanics/Latinos 2012, cancer has surpassed heart disease to become the leading cause of death among Hispanics in the United States.

However, according to this study, many of these deaths can be prevented if Hispanics increase the use of screening tests for cancer diagnosis. Latinos are less likely to get routine preventive screening and therefore the diagnosis of cancer is found in more advanced stages of the disease. Early detection can increase the effectiveness of treatment outcomes and it is important to know that resources and advances in treatments are available that can help a cancer patient.

Besides, there are other factors that can impact the health care received by Hispanic patients. Jorge Puente, Oncology Asia/Canada Regional President for Pfizer, Inc. says that "the large number of uninsured and the lack of access to health care among Hispanics, are factors that contribute to delay patient cancer care." In addition, Dr. Puente said at a meeting of citizens in Los Angeles where he discussed the issue of cancer and Latinos, that we must take steps to work with the stigma and fear of cancer that exists in the Latino community.

Source: Copyright Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)

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