More than 800 people a day are now diagnosed with cancer in England, new figures have revealed.
Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has found that the number of cancer cases continues to rise, with 296,863 new cases in 2014 – the equivalent of 813 per day.
Slightly more of the new cancer cases were among men, almost 151,000, rather than women in a trend that has been seen in previous years.
The figures also showed that breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer and bowel cancer collectively made up more than half of all cases.
It comes after Cancer Research UK released statistics showing the number of people diagnosed with cancer over the last two decades has risen by 12 per cent.
In the last decade alone, incidence rates in Yorkshire and the Humber, have increased five per cent – from 596 per 100,000 people in 2001-2003 to 628 per 100,000 people in 2011-2013.
Sarah Toule, head of health information at the World Cancer Research Fund, said: “As the number of cancer cases continues to rise, we must ensure that the public is more aware of how to reduce their cancer risk, so that they can make informed decisions about their lifestyles.
“Only by focusing on prevention will we begin to get a grip on the cancer epidemic that is affecting this country.
“Breast, prostate and colorectal cancer account for over 40 per cent of these new cases, yet a person’s risk of developing any of these can be reduced by adopting a healthier lifestyle – including maintaining a healthy weight.
“In fact, after not smoking, being a healthy weight is the most important thing you can do to reduce your risk of cancer.”
Breast cancer cases have risen by 3.5 per cent in a year, which equates to more than 1,500 more cases in England in 2014 than the year before.
Samia al Qadhi, chief executive of Breast Cancer Care, added: “This worrying trend shows no sign of stopping. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in England. Getting older increases breast cancer risk so, as our ageing population grows, more and more people will hear the life-changing news they have breast cancer.
“How the NHS will cope with the rising numbers of breast cancer patients is a very real concern. There isn’t a day to lose – we must ensure anyone diagnosed gets the vital information and support they need from day one.”
Rising prostate cancer rates have also sparked concern, with the Prostate Cancer UK charity predicting that it will be the most commonly diagnosed cancer by 2030. Despite advances in treatment and awareness, death rates in the UK for prostate cancer are the worst in Western Europe.
Meanwhile Cancer Research UK has said that despite the increase in people’s chances of getting cancer, the chances of surviving the disease have also climbed.
Earlier diagnosis, screening programmes, better tests and treatments have all led to the chances of surviving cancer doubling over the last 40 years.
Nick Ormiston-Smith, Cancer Research UK’s head of statistical information, said: “There’s still a huge variation in survival between different cancer types and there’s a lot of work to do to reach Cancer Research UK’s ambition for three in four patients to survive their disease by 2034.”