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The ultimate measure of our nation's success against cancer is how quickly and how far we can lower the death rate from this group of diseases. This final section of the Cancer Trends Progress Report – 2011/2012 Update provides national data not only on cancer mortality by major sites, but also in terms of years of life lost to cancer—a measure that emphasizes the tragedy of common cancers that strike people at a relatively young age.
As highlighted at the beginning of this report, the news is good. For the first time since the government began collecting mortality data early in the last century, cancer death rates began to decline in 1993. It is our job as a nation to maintain and accelerate this trend. Future editions of this report will continue to document our progress in the ongoing battle against deaths from cancer.