Around 200 Vietnamese die daily from cancer, while 130,000 new patients are diagnosed annually with the disease, a hospital head said at a conference in Hanoi on Thursday.
According to the data, cancer results in 70,000 deaths in Vietnam per year, Dr. Tran Van Thuan, director of Hanoi-based K Hospital, said at the conference on cancer prevention.
Nguyen Chan Hung, chairman of the hospital's Vietnam Cancer Society, said that lung cancer is one of the most common forms of the disease in Vietnam and the world as a whole.
“One third of the patients in Vietnam are women, and passive smoking is one of the main causes,” Hung added.
More than 70 percent Vietnamese with cancer seek treatment in hospital at late stages, which has dramatic negative effects on their recovery ability and survival rates, according to Dr. Thuan.
“The proportion of patients internationally who fully recover from cancer is 80 percent, but in Vietnam the rate is only 33 percent for men and 40 percent for women,” he added.
Thuan said that most types of cancer in the Southeast Asian country are on the rise, except cervical cancer, thanks to the rise in prevention awareness amongst Vietnamese women.
Vietnam cancer rates are ranked at 78 out of 172 countries and territories, according to a 2014 survey by the WHO Global Cancer Countries.
Speaking at the conference, French experts noted that there will be around 189,000 new patients diagnosed with cancer in Vietnam in 2020, nearly triple the 70,000 cases recorded in 2000.
Pundits suggested that Vietnam aim to cure treatable cancer types, including breast cancer, and cervical cancer, while providing higher living standards and medical treatment quality for those who suffer from cancer types that are more difficult to cure, like lung cancer.
They added that Vietnam should follow developed countries to focus on early cancer detection.
Dr. Thuan said that Vietnam only conducts regular medical investigations in Hanoi, Thua Thien-Hue, Thai Nguyen, Hai Phong City, Can Tho City, and Ho Chi Minh City.
“We will increase the number of localities where new cancer cases and deaths are tracked to nine in the near future,” Dr. Thuan said.