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For the last three years, the call-to-action of World Cancer Day — “Close the Care Gap” — has focused on health equity challenges.

It is estimated that 50-60% of patients with cancer will need radiotherapy8. Radiotherapy provides excellent local tumor control and is used to cure localized disease, palliate symptoms, and control disease in incurable cancer. There are serious limitations worldwide in the availability of radiotherapy services. Even in some high-income countries such as Canada, Australia and the UK, access to radiotherapy facilities and equipment is still inadequate due to lack of investment. While advances in treatment technologies have dramatically enhanced treatment capabilities, leading to celebrated improvements in outcomes across many countries, much of the global population has thus far been left out of this cancer care revolution:

Tremendous Gaps in Access to Treatment Resources

14,875 linear accelerators globally1 *
Map_marker_blu
0 %

are in high-income
countries

Map_marker_blu
0 %

are in middle-income
countries

Map_marker_red
ONLY  0 %

are in low-income
countries

High-income countries only account for <20% of the global population
80 %
of the world’s patients with cancer have access to only of global radiotherapy resources.2

30

countries still have
NO RADIOTHERAPY
TREATMENT CENTERS.
3
Half of these countries are in Africa

Access Gaps Produce Outcome Disparities4

In 2020, 70% of the almost 10 million cancer- related deaths worldwide were in LOW-AND-MIDDLE-INCOME COUNTRIES

Childhood Cancer Survival Rates5

High-Income Countries:
>80% of children are cured

Low-Income Countries:

<30% of children are cured

Growing Cancer Burden Will Magnify Equity Issues6

Low-Human
Development Index (HDI)
Countries
96%
increase
in cancer cases

High-Human
Development Index (HDI)
Countries
32%
increase
in cancer cases

Major Disparities Within
Developed Nations, Too7

>70%
of U.S. counties have
NO MEDICAL ONCOLOGISTS
40%
of Americans living in rural areas say they
LACK REASONABLE ACCESS TO CANCER SPECIALISTS

Closing radiotherapy access gaps could save

1 MILLION

LIVES ANNUALLY

Important Safety Statement:
Most side effects of radiotherapy, including radiotherapy delivered with Accuray systems, are mild and temporary, often involving fatigue, nausea, and skin irritation. Side effects can be severe, however, leading to pain, alterations in normal body functions (for example, urinary or salivary function), deterioration of quality of life, permanent injury, and even death. Side effects can occur during or shortly after radiation treatment or in the months and years following radiation. The nature and severity of side effects depend on many factors, including the size and location of the treated tumor, the treatment technique (for example, the radiation dose), and the patient’s general medical condition, to name a few. For more details about the side effects of your radiation therapy, and to see if treatment with an Accuray product is right for you, ask your doctor.
Sources:
1. Maitre P, Krishnatry R, Chopra S, Gondhowiardjo S, Likonda BM, Hussain QM, Zubizarreta EH, Agarwal JP. Modern Radiotherapy Technology: Obstacles and Opportunities to Access in Low- and Middle-Income Countries. JCO Glob Oncol. 2022 Jul;8:e2100376. doi: 10.1200/GO.21.00376. PMID: 35839434; PMCID: PMC9812473.
2. Court L, Aggarwal A, Burger H, Cardenas C, Chung C, Douglas R, du Toit M, Jaffray D, Jhingran A, Mejia M, Mumme R, Muya S, Naidoo K, Ndumbalo J, Nealon K, Netherton T, Nguyen C, Olanrewaju N, Parkes J, Shaw W, Trauernicht C, Xu M, Yang J, Zhang L, Simonds H, Beadle BM. Addressing the Global Expertise Gap in Radiation Oncology: The Radiation Planning Assistant. JCO Glob Oncol. 2023 Jul;9:e2200431. doi: 10.1200/GO.22.00431. PMID: 37471671; PMCID: PMC10581646.
3. https://ncdalliance.org/resources/closing-the-cancer-divide-a-blueprint-to-expand-access-in-low-and-middle-income-countries-by-the-global-task-force-on-expanded-access-to-cancer-care
4. https://www.cancer.org/about-us/our-global-health-work/global-cancer-burden.html
5. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/cancer-in-children
6. https://www.wcrf.org/differences-in-cancer-incidence-and-mortality-across-the-globe/#:~:text=The%20number%20of%20new%20cases,in%20very%20high%20HDI%20countries.
7. Kenamond MC, Mourad WF, Randall ME, Kaushal A. No Oncology Patient Left Behind: Challenges and Solutions in Rural Radiation Oncology. Lancet Reg Health Am. 2022 Sep;13:100289. doi: 10.1016/j.lana.2022.100289. Epub 2022 Jun 3. PMID: 35692288; PMCID: PMC9170528.
8. Atun R, Jaffray DA, Barton MB, Bray F, Baumann M, Vikram B, Hanna TP, Knaul FM, Lievens Y, Lui TY, Milosevic M, O’Sullivan B, Rodin DL, Rosenblatt E, Van Dyk J, Yap ML, Zubizarreta E, Gospodarowicz M. Expanding global access to radiotherapy. Lancet Oncol. 2015 Sep;16(10):1153-86. doi: 10.1016/S1470-2045(15)00222-3. PMID: 26419354.

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