In its projection, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said in 2016 the total number of new cancer cases is expected to be around 14.5 Lakh and the figure is likely to reach nearly 17.3 Lakh new cases in 2020. Over 7.36 Lakh people are expected to succumb to the disease in 2016 while the figure is estimated to shoot up to 8.8 Lakh by 2020 huge patient pool & treatable population
“One in eight Indians is likely to develop cancer in their lifetime, unless you are in Aizawl where the chances are one in four" A Nandkumar, Head of National Cancer Registry said.
Data also revealed that only 12.5 per cent of patients come for treatment in early stages of the disease lack of awareness and hence no early detection, but huge treatment potential if screened and detected earlier.
Average costs for administering cancer drugs are typically at least twice as much when treatment is received in hospital outpatient settings rather than in physician offices higher medical bills, mostly paid out of pocket
Presently, only one-fifth of Indians have some cover. Most health insurance products do not cover critical illnesses such as cancer, and a few come with sub-limits or may not cover the entire cost of treatment need for a dedicated cancer care product to address end-to-end cancer care treatment cost.
India has only 200-250 comprehensive cancer care centers, which is ~ 1 for 6 million population significant opportunity for new cancer detection & treatment centers.
Currently, only upper middle class / higher class patients can access large private / corporate hospitals – where the facilities are hygienic and state of the art. The medicine costs are higher in these hospitals and waiting period can also, at times, extend beyond acceptable limits - hence large private centers are beyond reach of majority of population
In Government hospitals / tertiary leading cancer centers, although the medicines are affordable and treatment providers are highly efficient, the time factor is a concern due to high patient load. While the waiting time sometime extends into days where the patient has to re-visit on another day due to the humongous work-load on the staff - thus centers accessible to majority of population lack in terms of basic necessities like waiting time and sometimes even basic hygiene.