Estimates of cancer incidence for 2011 in the United States show that about two-thirds of those with cancer survive five or more years after diagnosis, according to a report published in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

S. Jane Henley, M.S.P.H., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues analyzed data from U.S. Cancer Statistics for 2011 to assess progress toward achieving Healthy People 2020 objectives.

The researchers found that 1,532,066 invasive cancers were reported to cancer registries in the United States in 2011, for an annual incidence rate of 451 cases per 100,000 persons.

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The incidence rates were higher among males than females (508 versus 410) and highest among blacks (458).

The incidence rates varied by state, from 374 to 509 per 100,000 (339 in Puerto Rico). The proportion of individuals with cancer who survived for five years or more was 65 percent for males and females, but was lower for blacks than whites (60 versus 65 percent).

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“Surveillance of cancer incidence and survival are essential for identifying population groups with high cancer incidence rates and low cancer survival rates as well as for estimating the number of cancer survivors, which was 13.7 million in 2012,” the authors write.

“These data are being used by states to effectively develop comprehensive cancer control programs, including supporting the needs of cancer survivors.”


  1. Henley, S. Jane, MSPH, et al. “Invasive Cancer Incidence and Survival — United States, 2011.” CDC. 64(09);237-242. March 13, 2015.