Number of new cancer patients in Japan decreased for first time in 2020

Japan Times -- Nov 26
The National Cancer Center said Friday that the number of people in Japan newly diagnosed with cancer in 2020 fell for the first time since it started collecting such data in 2007.

The number dropped 5.9% from the previous year, with a significant drop marked in May 2020, when Japan was under its first coronavirus state of emergency.

Believing that the 2020 result was due to a decrease in cancer screenings, the center is asking citizens to get checked for cancer regularly.

Every year, the center gathers data on the number of patients newly diagnosed with or treated for cancer at designated cancer hospitals and other institutions throughout Japan.

The total number of such patients last year came to 1.04 million at 863 facilities. The figure is believed to cover around 70% of all new cancer cases for the year.

Compared with 2019, when 849 institutions reported 1.10 million patients, the number of new cancer patients fell at 594 facilities last year. The average size of the decrease was 4.6%.