Access to cancer treatment in non-metropolitan areas of Australia
A study by Deloitte Access Economics for Amgen Australia Pty Ltd has found large disparities in cancer outcomes between people living in metropolitan versus non-metropolitan regions with incidence and mortality higher in non-metropolitan regions.
Cancer imposes a substantial burden on Australian society, from a financial and personal perspective. Of all cancers, prostate and breast cancer are some of the most burdensome, imposing years of poor health and reducing total years of life.
Deloitte Access Economics was commissioned by Amgen Australia Pty Ltd to evaluate the literature surrounding cancer treatment and cancer outcomes in non-metropolitan Australia, and to quantify access to cancer-related treatments. Access was defined as the distance to the nearest cancer-related treatment, including the nearest infusion service for the intravenous delivery of cancer-related treatment (i.e., chemotherapy) and radiotherapy service.
This study has found large disparities in cancer outcomes between people living in metropolitan versus non-metropolitan regions. Incidence rates and mortality rates for prostate cancer are higher in non-metropolitan regions, along with breast cancer mortality rates.
Given the disparity in cancer outcomes between metropolitan and non-metropolitan regions, it is imperative that federal and state/territory governments continue to improve access to cancer treatment services in non-metropolitan regions.