Why is this happening?
Officials attribute these new statistics to several different causes. First of all, medical providers note that there is a general lack of awareness about breast cancer and self-examination in the Indian population. Officials note this lack of education could actually be hiding much higher rates of cancer cases that go undiagnosed. In addition to low awareness, India also has a high rate of late detection which further contributes to their high mortality rate. While detection practices are important and improved education would certainly help to fight breast cancer, other changes in the population are also contributing to these statistics. For example, obesity grew in India at twice the global rate last year. Obesity, and other overall health practices such as alcohol consumption and breast-feeding patterns have all been linked to rates of breast cancer. In response to this new data, and the possibility that the situation is actually much worse, Indian health officials are working to improve access to education and care for patients with or at risk of developing breast cancer.
Read more about India’s situation in The Times of India.