Pancreatic Cancer Action Network Responds to National Cancer Institute Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer

MANHATTAN BEACH, CA (December 20, 2013) — Julie Fleshman, President and CEO of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, today released the following statement in response to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer.

“While we are pleased to see the overall decline of cancer incidence and death in the United States, we must  bring attention to the report’s findings that pancreatic cancer incidence and death rates continue to rise.  The fight against pancreatic cancer is far from over, and this report shows that more attention and resources must be dedicated to the research, treatment and ultimate eradication of this disease,” Fleshman said.

The NCI’s Annual Report, released in conjunction with the American Cancer Society, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries found that overall death rates continued to decline for all cancers combined for men and women of all major racial and ethnic groups and for most major cancer sites during the period of 2001-2010.  However, the report found increased death rates for cancer of the pancreas for both sexes, and increased incidence of pancreatic cancer for both men and women during this time.     

Pancreatic cancer is currently the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the United States, and is anticipated to become the second by 2020.  It is one of the nation’s deadliest cancers, the five-year survival rate is just six percent and an estimated 73 percent of patients die within the first year of diagnosis.  In 2013, an estimated 45,220 people will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the United States, and approximately 38,460 will die from the disease.  Based on the changing demographics of the U.S. population and changes in the incidence rate and death rate, the number of new cases of pancreatic cancer will increase more than 2-fold and the number of deaths will increase 2.4-fold by the year 2030.

“The findings in the NCI’s Annual Report further highlight the need to increase federal funding for both the NCI and the National Institutes of Health so that continued progress can be made in the fight against all forms of cancer,” added Fleshman.

For further information about pancreatic cancer and about the diagnosis, treatment options and patient support offered by the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, please visit

About the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is the national organization creating hope in a comprehensive way through research, patient support, community outreach and advocacy for a cure. The organization is leading the way to increase the survival rate for people diagnosed with this devastating disease through a bold initiative — The Vision of Progress: Double the Pancreatic Cancer Survival Rate by 2020. Together, we can know, fight and end pancreatic cancer by intensifying our efforts to heighten awareness, raise funds for comprehensive private research, and advocate for dedicated federal research to advance early diagnostics, better treatments and increase chances of survival.

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Jennifer Rosen
Senior Manager, Public Relations
Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
Direct: 310-706-3362