Technical notes

  • Cancer is classified by the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems Version 10 (ICD–10). This is a statistical classification, published by the World Health Organization, in which each morbid condition is assigned a unique code according to established criteria.
  • Actual mortality data from 1998 to 2015 are based on the year of occurrence of the death and data for 2016 are based on the year of registration of the death.
  • The 2016–2021 incidence estimates are projections based on 2006–2015 incidence data. The 2017–2021 mortality estimates are projections based on 2007-2016 data.
  • Relative survival was calculated with the period method, using the period 2011–2015 (Brenner & Gefeller 1996). This captured the survival experience of people who were diagnosed with cancer before or during 2011–2015 and were still alive at the beginning of 2011. Note that this period does not contain incidence data for 2015 for NSW. Data from the National Death Index (NDI) on deaths (from any cause) that occurred up to 31 December 2015 were used to determine which people with cancer had died and when this occurred.
  • Relative survival for registry-derived (RD) stage tables was calculated using the cohort method, using the period 2011–2016. In this method, a cohort of patients diagnosed with cancer is followed over time to estimate the proportion surviving for a selected timeframe (e.g. 5 years).
  • Age-specific incidence, mortality and prevalence rates are expressed as per 100,000 population.
  • Age-standardised incidence and mortality rates for the Australian population were age standardised to the 2001 Australian Standard Population and are expressed as per 100,000 population.
  • Incidence and mortality rates are based on the Australian population as at 30 June. Prevalence rates are based on the Australian population as at 31 December.
  • Stage data for colorectal cancer excludes cases identified from death certificates only, cancer of the appendix (ICD-10 code C18.1), and colorectal cancers with a histology for which staging rules are not applicable.
  • Stage data for breast cancer in females includes ICD-10 code C50, lung cancer excludes trachea (C34), melanoma of the skin excludes skin of genitals and melanoma of “unknown primary site” (C43) and prostate cancer includes C61. Certain morphology codes are excluded.