Chart of the Week: Jamaica’s Major Cause of Death “Neoplasms”

Source: STATIN

The World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) is a treaty adopted by the 56th World Health Assembly on 21 May 2003. It is an agreement that seeks “to protect present and future generations from the devastating health, social, environmental and economic consequences of tobacco consumption and exposure to tobacco smoke” by enacting a set of universal standards stating the dangers of tobacco and limiting its use in all forms worldwide. Jamaica signed the World Health Organisation Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in 2003.

In making his contribution to the 2013/2014 Sectoral Debate, Minister of Health, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson announced that as of Monday, July 15, smoking in public areas will be banned. The ban results in the implementation of the Public Health (Tobacco Control) Regulations 2013.

diGgers did you know that tobacco use accounts for 87% of lung cancer deaths and also increases risk for other cancers, as well as chronic diseases including heart disease and emphysema. Additionally, even though it is less common, some people who do not smoke get lung cancer too. Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and as such it is a major public health concern.

It is against this background that for this week’s Chart of the Week we have a look at the Percentage of Deaths Caused By Cancer (Neoplasms)/Total Number of Deaths for the Population, 2008-2011(see chart above). Neoplasms is the fancy way of saying Cancer, which is an abnormal mass of tissue. Malignant Neoplasm is a tumor that tends to grow, invade, and spread throughout the body. If untreated, it may result in death.

In Jamaica, one of the leading cause of death is Cancer. For the period 2008-2011, the percentage of deaths caused by cancer/total number of deaths for the population has gradually increased. The percentages are 36% (2008), 38% (2009), 39% (2010), 41% (2011).

diGging a little deeper in the statistics, one notices the trend within the category of malignant cancer, the cases of malignant cancer of the larynx, trachea, bronchus and lung have consistent high numbers within that category. Out of the total deaths caused by a malignant cancer, cancer of the larynx, trachea, bronchus and lung have been reported as cause of death in 14% of the cases in 2008 and 2009, 12% of the cases in 2010 and 13% of the cases in 2011.

Source: STATIN