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CancerTrends survival report

Report released by the University of Otago and the Ministry of Health -Cancer Trends: Trends in cancer survival by ethnic and socioeconomic group, New Zealand 1991–2004.

About us

The CancerTrends Study aims to determine trends in cancer incidence and survival in New Zealand from 1981 onwards, by ethnic group and socio-economic status. CancerTrends uses anonymously and probabilistically linked cancer registrations and census records of all people who developed cancer from 1981 to 2004 in New Zealand.

There are three main reasons for CancerTrends:

1. Whilst the aetiology on cancers is complex, specific to each cancer, and not fully understood, it is also true that the risk factors for cancers (e.g. energy imbalance, infections, physical activity, diet) are socially patterned. Further, this social patterning is likely to vary over time. Therefore, it is likely that cancer incidence trends by ethnicity and socio-economic position will vary. Due to different recording of ethnicity between cancer registry and census data during this period, we currently do not know what the ethnic trends in cancer incidence are. Likewise, we do not know cancer incidence trends by socio-economic position. CancerTrends will fill both these knowledge gaps.

2. CancerTrends is that we will also be able to estimate cancer survival trends by ethnicity and socioeconomic position – an important performance indicator of the health system and a potential contributor to cancer outcomes.

3. CancerTrends will greatly assist with planning and implementation relevant to the second purpose of the Cancer Control Strategy, to reduce inequalities in cancer. In the longer-term, CancerTrends will enable better prediction of future cancer incidence and mortality, and the benchmarking and evaluation of any interventions designed to reduce social inequalities in cancer incidence or survival.




CancerTrends was primarily funded by the Health Research Council, with additional funding provided by the Ministry of Health.

NZCMS/CT Data Explorer

The NZCMS/CT Data Explorer (funded by the Ministry of Health) aims to provide users of population-level public health data with a flexible tool to monitor and analyse trends in NZ mortality and cancer incidence over time. Due to its linkage with the Census, the NZCMS/CT data is rich with aggregate-level demographic information on mortality and cancer incidence in NZ.

New NZCMS/CT Data Explorer (1981-2011 mortality and cancer data linked to the relevant Census)

Publications and presentations

A list of publications and presentations of the CancerTrends project.

Our people

  • Tony Blakely (Principal Investigator)
  • June Atkinson
  • Sarah Hill
  • Diana Sarfati
  • Caroline Shaw
  • Matt Soeberg

CancerTrends Study
Department of Public Health
University of Otago, Wellington
PO Box 7343
Wellington South 6242
New Zealand
Tel 64 4 918 5072

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