More than 50% rise in chemotherapy demand predicted by 2040

More than 50% rise in chemotherapy demand predicted by 2040

To deliver optimal treatment by 2040, a significant expansion of the chemotherapy workforce is needed.

Between 2018 and 2040, the number of patients requiring first-line chemotherapy treatment each year is predicted to rise from 9.8 million to 15 million (53%) globally, if there were full application of evidence-based guidelines. This is according to a modelling study published in The Lancet Oncology journal, which is the first study to estimate the scale of chemotherapy provision needed at national, regional, and global scales to respond to this situation.

By 2040, two-thirds (67%, 10.1 million out of 15 million) of patients requiring chemotherapy will reside in low- or middle-income countries. Of the additional 5.2 million people needing treatment by 2040, an estimated 75% will reside in these countries.

Existing evidence has shown the global number of cancer cases are expected to rise, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. [1] As a crucial component of cancer care, chemotherapy treatment is likely to benefit a large proportion of these cases.

To respond to rising demand globally, the study estimates the number of physicians needed in 2018 and 2040 to provide chemotherapy to all patients who would benefit from it (the actual number of practising cancer physicians worldwide is unknown). Their results show that workforce requirements to deliver optimal chemotherapy will increase from approximately 65,000 cancer physicians in 2018 to 100,000 in 2040.

Source: The Lancet Oncology: Global study predicts more than 50% rise in chemotherapy demand by 2040