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India has a low cancer rate in relation to other Western nations but the cost per death ratio in India was at a startling 2.73 which is almost double of the cost incurred by the BRICS, according to the findings of a report published in the Journal of Cancer Epidemiology. India has also lost almost $6.7 billion in 2012 due to cancer which is around 0.3% of the GDP. India stands second to South Africa which cost around $1.9 billion amounting 0.49% to its GDP. India also has among the highest and most number of avoidable deaths due to cancer. This study published last week takes Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - known as BRICS - into consideration for tabulating the consolidated data. The cost per death of productivity lost in India was just under $20,000 - lowest among all the BRICS countries. The highest total productivity loss in the country comes from the lip and oral cancer. It stands at an alarming rate of $ 0.74 billion. China also recorded an alarming rate of rate of loss in productivity due to cancer from tobacco smoking, stands at an alarming $8 billion. Five cancers leading to the highest loss of productivity in South Africa were lung cancer, cervical cancer, breast cancer, Kaposi sarcoma and oesophageal cancer. The study was a part Europen Short Term Scientific Mission in order to assess the loss of productivity in BRICS countries due to cancer. According to a report by The Indian Express, Dr Pankaj Chaturvedi, a cancer surgeon at the Tata Memorial Hospital said that almost 50% of oral cavity cancer in India can be attributed to betel quid combined with the smoke of tobacco. He also asserted the fact that loss of productivity in India is dominated by oral and lip cancer due to the high prevalence of chewing tobacco in the country. The report further states that smoking prevalence in India was found to be 23 per cent in Indian men and 2 per cent in women.
Tobacco-related diseases cost an astounding Rs 100 billion to India's healthcare.Calculating the costs The research also suggests that policies encouraging lifestyle changes can actually bring down the soaring levels of loss in productivity and life due to cancer in the BRICS economies. Combination of vaccination programs, tobacco control, cancer screening and adequate access to adequate cancer treatment can yield significant gains for both public health as well as economic performance in the BRICS countries. These measures can deal with premature and potentially avoidable deaths from cancer and save tens and billions of dollars in lost productivity in key developing countries. Differences in the availability of access to adequate treatment programs cause variability in survival resulting in loss of productivity in both developing and developed countries. Lost of productivity and cost per death of leukaemia are relatively high at 5 per cent of the total because advanced treatment can be difficult to access for several patients. Beyond the public health impact and loss to human life, cancer also imposes an economic cost upon societies. The cost includes loss of productivity in the society due to the premature death of the person suffering from cancer. Taking the loss of productivity into consideration gives the policymakers and additional perspective when they chart out roadmap and priorities for prevention of cancer and control. Loss of productivity in BRICS economies due to premature cancer-related mortality is considerable in total cost terms which are at $46.3billion thereby amounting to 0.33% of their GDP, combined. However, the report also suggests that many deaths caused due to cancer in the BRICS countries are avoidable, amenable to prevention, early detection and treatment. Treatment costs are lower and survival rates are higher if cancer is detected at an early stage.