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India spent Rs.2,386 crores on Oral Cancer treatment in 2020: Tata’s 1st of its kind Study

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India spent approximately Rs. 2,386 croresAccording to the 1st of its kind study on the ‘cost of illness analysis of oral cancer’ conducted by Tata Memorial Centre, India has spent ~ INR 2, 386 crore in 2020 on Oral Cancer Treatment  paid for by insurance schemes, government and private sector, spending out of pocket payments and charitable donations or a combination of all.

  • The amount of INR 2, 386 crore is a significant portion of healthcare budget allocation that India made in 2019-20, towards a single disease.
  • Without any inflation in costs, it will result in an INR 23, 724 crore economic burden on India over the next ten years.
  • Tata’s cost analysis study is the 1st in India which aims to determine direct healthcare costs of oral cancer in India. It will help policymakers to make appropriate allocation of resources towards cancer.
  • Dr Arjun Singh, Research Fellow at Tata Memorial Hospital is the lead author of the study.

Key Points

i.Prevention & Early detection strategies must be key mitigation strategies. Early detection strategies can save upto almost INR 250 crore annually for the government.

  • Almost 60-80% of the cases of oral cancer visit their specialist oncologists at advanced stages.

ii.The Unit Cost of treating advanced stages (INR 2, 02, 892) was 42% greater than early stages (INR 1, 17, 135). An 11% average reduction in unit costs was observed as socioeconomic status increased.

iii.Strengthening existing policies which prohibit the use of cancer-causing substances (such as tobacco, areca nut use), and policies which provide evidence-based insurances and reimbursements for people are needed.

iv.50% of oral cancer patients in India die within a year of diagnosis  and are aged between 30-50 years, leading to a huge productivity loss for India.

Oral Cancer

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death globally, with 70% of cancer cases occurring in low and middle-income countries.

i.In India, Oral Cavity cancer is most common among men. It accounted for almost a third of the global incidence in 2020.

ii.The rate of new cases being diagnosed has increased by 68% in the last two decades, making it a real public health crisis.

Recent Related News

February 5, 2021, According to a recently released report of  ICMR & NCDIR, the number of New Cancer Cases in North East Region (NER) is set to increase to 57, 131 by 2025 (Cancer cases in NE to rise by 13.5% by 2025), which is a big increase over the estimated 50, 317 cases of Cancer in NER in 2020.

About Tata Memorial Centre

It is an Grant-in-Aid Institution  under Department of Atomic Energy, Government of India
Director – Dr. R. A. Badwe
Location – Mumbai, Maharashtra