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Ireland's breast cancer mortality among highest in OECD

A new OECD report on worldwide health standards shows that Ireland has the third-highest mortality rate of 34 developed countries.

Image: Aunt Owwee via Flickr

IRELAND HAS ONE of the highest mortality rates from breast cancer in the developed world, according to a major new report from the OECD.

The ‘Health at a Glance’ report for 2011 shows that of the 34 developed countries which are members of the organisation, Ireland has the third-highest mortality rate from the condition.

In Ireland, breast cancer accounts for 26.1 deaths per 100,000 of the population – with only women in Denmark (28.6) and Belgium (26.7) more likely to succumb to the disease. The average mortality rate was 20.1 per 100,000 population.

Ireland’s standing in prostate cancer was little better, with the eighth-highest mortality rate – at 25.9 deaths per 100,000, above the average of 22.4.

Lung cancer mortality is just below the OECD average, at 50 deaths per 100,000 compared to the average of 52.

Ireland’s overall cancer mortality rate was relatively close to the 34-country average, at 218 deaths per 100,000 population versus the average of 208.

Deaths as a result of stroke were significantly lower (at 41) in Ireland than the average, at 84 – though Ireland was higher than the average in deaths from heart disease – at 137 per 100,000 ahead of the average of 117.

Irish people are statistically less likely to die in transport accidents than those in other countries, with 5.1 deaths versus the global average of 8.2. The reduction in road fatalities in Ireland is among the best in the 34 countries surveyed.

Life expectancy at birth in Ireland, at 80.0 years, is slightly higher than the average of 79.5.

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About the author:

Gavan Reilly

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