AIHW Board AIHW senior staff Annual report Capability statement Collaboration AIHW corporate plan 2016–17 to 2019–20 Customer care charter FOI - freedom of information Indexed list of files Nous review Organisation chart Presentations Privacy of data Public Interest Disclosure Tenders
By category Ageing, disability & carers Families & children Hospitals Housing & homelessness Indigenous Australians Population groups Risk factors, diseases & death Services, workforce & spending
By subject Adoptions Aged care Ageing Alcohol & other drugs Arthritis & musculoskeletal conditions Asthma Australia's health Australia's welfare Burden of disease Cancer Cardiovascular disease Child health, development & wellbeing Child protection Children's services Chronic diseases
Chronic kidney disease Chronic respiratory conditions COPD Deaths Dementia Dental & oral health Diabetes Disability Expenditure Eye health Food & nutrition Health indicators Health performance Homelessness Hospitals Housing assistance Indigenous Australians Injury Life expectancy
Male health Mental health Mothers & babies Overweight & obesity Palliative care Population health Primary health care Prisoner health Risk factors Rural health Safety & quality of health care Veterans' health Workforce Youth health & wellbeing Youth justice
In other sections Data Publications Contact AIHW
Publications CatalogueOrdering publicationsForthcoming publications Online reports Subscribe to release notices
By subject Adoptions Aged care Ageing Alcohol & other drugs AIHW annual reports Arthritis & musculoskeletal conditions Asthma Australia's health Australia's welfare Burden of disease Cancer Cardiovascular disease Child health, development & wellbeing Child protection Children's services Chronic diseases Chronic kidney disease
Chronic respiratory conditions Corporate publications Data linkage Data standards Deaths Dental & oral health Diabetes Disability Expenditure Eye health Food & nutrition General practice Health indicators Health performance Homelessness Hospitals Housing assistance Indigenous Australians Indigenous housing
Injury Life expectancy Male health Mental health services Mothers & babies Overweight & obesity Palliative care Population health Primary health carePrisoner health Risk factors Rural health Safety & quality of health care Veterans' health Workforce Youth health & wellbeing Youth justice
In other sections Subjects Data Contact AIHW
About AIHW data METeOR—metadata online registry Data by subject AIHW data collections Customised data analysis request Data governance framework Data linking Data standards GovHack Privacy of data Accessing Australian Government health and welfare data
By subjectAboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Performance Framework Adoptions Aged care Alcohol and other drugs Alcohol data sources Body weight data sources Cancer Children's headline indicators (CHI) Child protection Data sources for monitoring health conditionsDeaths Diabetes Disability
Expenditure FHBH - Fixing houses for better health General Record of Incidence of Mortality (GRIM) books Height and weight data sources Hospitals Indigenous Australians International collaboration Maternity Information Matrix (MIM) Medical indemnity Mental health Mortality Over Regions and Time (MORT) books National Aged Care Data Clearinghouse
National core maternity indicators (NCMI) National framework for protecting Australia’s children (NFPAC) National indicator catalogue National Youth Information Framework (NYIF) Perinatal data Primary Health Network (PHN) Specialist Homelessness Services (SHS) Tobacco data sources Workforce
In other sections Subjects Publications Contact AIHW
AACR ACFADD AHSAC AIHW Board AIHW Ethics Committee AODTS NMDS WG CKDMAC CMAG CVDMAC HEAC
IGIHM JJ RIG MHISSC NAGATSIHID NCSIMG NDDWG NDIMG NHISSC NIAG NIRAPIMG NMDDNMDS
NMHPSC NOPSAD NPDDC NPHEP NPHIC PCDWG PDWG PHIDG PHIG REDWG Workforce committees
Education worksheets Infographics What's in the pipeline Subscribe to education notices Other educational links
Resources by subject All Latest Ageing Australia's health Australia's welfare Carers
Children & youth Disability Disease Drugs
Health Health prevention Indigenous Australians Injury
In other sections Subjects Data Publications Contact AIHW
Job vacancies How to apply for a position at the AIHW Conditions of employment Benefits of working for the AIHW Temporary employment register Occupational Training Program Contact the People Unit Graduates
AIHW Access magazine Media releases Subscribe to release notices Embargoed access to AIHW material Media contacts
You are here:
Cancer in Australia: an overview 2012 presents the latest available information on incidence, mortality, survival, prevalence, burden of cancer, hospitalisations and national cancer screening programs. It is estimated that the most commonly diagnosed cancers in 2012 will be prostate cancer, bowel cancer and breast cancer. For all cancers combined, the incidence rate increased by 12% from 1991 to 2009, but the mortality rate decreased and survival improved over time. Cancer outcomes differ by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status, remoteness area and socioeconomic status.
Download PDF or order a printed copy
In 2012, it is estimated that more than 120,700 Australians will be diagnosed with cancer, excluding basal and squamous cell carcinoma of the skin. More than half (56%) of these cases are expected to be diagnosed in males. The most commonly reported cancers in 2012 are expected to be prostate cancer, followed by bowel cancer, breast cancer, melanoma of the skin and lung cancer.
Between 1991 and 2009, the number of new cancer cases diagnosed almost doubled — from 66,393 to 114,137. This increasing trend is primarily due to the rise in the number of prostate cancer, breast cancer in females, bowel cancer and lung cancer, and is partly explained by the ageing and increasing size of the population.
In 2010, more than 42,800 Australians died from cancer. Cancer accounted for about 3 in 10 deaths in Australia, making it the second most common cause of death, exceeded only by cardiovascular diseases. For all cancers combined, the age-standardised mortality rate decreased by 17% from 210 per 100,000 in 1991 to 174 per 100,000 in 2010.
Five-year survival from all cancers combined increased from 47% in 1982-1987 to 66% in 2006-2010. The cancers that had the largest survival gains over this time were prostate cancer, kidney cancer and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Gains in survival have not been consistent across all cancers. Some cancers that already had low survival in 1982-1987 showed only small gains, such as mesothelioma (from 5.5% to 6.2%), brain cancer (from 20% to 22%), pancreatic cancer (from 3% to 5%) and lung cancer (from 9% to 14%).
Australians diagnosed with cancer generally had better survival prospects compared with people living in other countries and regions.
Cancer outcomes differ by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status, remoteness area and socioeconomic status. For all cancers combined, Indigenous Australians experienced higher incidence and mortality rates than non-Indigenous Australians. Incidence rates and survival were lower for people living in remote areas compared with those in major cities, while mortality rates rose with increasing remoteness. Incidence and mortality rates rose and survival from all cancers fell as a person's socioeconomic status decreased.