Cancer Incidence and Mortality in Eeyou Istchee

Fri, 08/09/2013 - 11:23 -- Tracy Wysote
TitleCancer Incidence and Mortality in Eeyou Istchee
Publication TypeResearch
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsGangbe M, Anderman A, Kuzmina E, Owen PL, Torrie J
Secondary AuthorsProvencher S, Beaudry-Godin M, Zoungrana H, Martinez J, Lejeune P

Executive Summary

Cancer is an important and well-documented public health issue in industrialized countries. However,
cancer information on Canadian Aboriginals is scarce. Some studies have reported that for decades,
Aboriginal communities have had lower cancer incidence/mortality rates, but more recent reports show
that this has steadily increased. Based on incidence data (from 1985 to 2009) and mortality data (from
2000 to 2009), the current report compares the cancer profile of Eeyou Istchee (Health Region 18) to
that of the Rest of Quebec (the province of Quebec without the Eeyou Istchee Health Region). Within
Eeyou Istchee, analyses were limited due to the small numbers of cancer cases for each Cree
community. Main conclusions were as follow:

1- The numbers of cancers in Eeyou Istchee (EI) have been increasing over the last 20 years
because the size of the population has been increasing. However, the rates of cancer have been
stable or are decreasing.

2- In comparison to other Quebec health regions, the rates of cancer in Eeyou Istchee are lower for
all cancers except kidney cancer. This applied most often to males, as differences between
females from Eeyou Istchee and elsewhere were generally not significant

3- Colorectal cancer is increasing and now matches Quebec’s rate.

4- The ratio of mortality to incidence increased in males, from 2000-2004 to 2005-2009, indicating
a decrease of the 5-year cancer relative survival rate in EI males.

5- Cree communities tend to have comparable rates of cancer incidence. However, Waskaganish
had significantly lower rates compared to expected rates, while Whapmagoostui had
significantly higher rates.

The report also suggests some priorities for cancer prevention in Eeyou Istchee. Indeed, available
scientific knowledge shows that community programs at the population level and clinical preventive
services at the individual level could contribute to lessen the burden of cancer by :a) addressing lifestyle factors like physical inactivity, obesity, smoking, heavy alcohol use, early age at first pregnancy; b) closely following patients and specially male cancer patients; and c) enforcing monitoring and health surveillance activities oriented towards selected risk factors, and health conditions and programs.

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