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Report: US cancer rates continue downward trend

By Mike Stobbe
AP Medical Writer / March 28, 2012
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ATLANTA—A new report says U.S. cancer rates continue to fall.

Health officials say cancer rates have been going down thanks to better screening, treatment advances, and efforts to prevent some cancers by reducing smoking and other unhealthy behaviors.

The rate of new cancer cases has been inching down at a rate of about half a percent each year since 1999. And cancer death rates have dropped by more than 1 percent.

The figures come from a report issued annually since 1998 by a group of government agencies and other organizations, including the American Cancer Society and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The report released Wednesday includes nearly every cancer case reported in the United States through 2008.

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