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Cancer deaths on the increase with 12 lives lost daily in Northern Ireland

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The number of people dying from cancer in Northern Ireland has jumped by 35% in the last three decades

The number of people dying from cancer in Northern Ireland has jumped by 35% in the last three decades

The number of people dying from cancer in Northern Ireland has jumped by 35% in the last three decades

The number of people dying from cancer in Northern Ireland has jumped by 35% in the last three decades.

The disease claimed 4,230 lives during 2013 - equivalent to 12 deaths a day - researchers found.

It remains the biggest killer, accounting for 28% of all deaths last year.

The details are disclosed in a report examining population trends in Northern Ireland.

Other key findings include:

  • 24,277 births were registered in Northern Ireland last year, including 937 to teenage mothers.
  • For the third successive year migration contributed to a net loss in population.
  • 303 people lost their lives through suicide in 2013 - the second highest total on record.
  • 8,126 marriages took place last year, as did 2,403 divorces.

The findings were published by the NI Statistics and Research Agency.

Last year 14,968 deaths were registered in Northern Ireland.

Cancer was the most common cause, with last year's total rising 35% on the 3,138 cancer-related deaths recorded in 1983.

Roisin Foster from Cancer Focus Northern Ireland said there were various reasons for the increase in deaths.

"The main reason for the rise in cancer deaths is that we have an aging population," she said.

"Data collection is also much better, thanks largely to the introduction of the NI Cancer Registry 20 years ago. In the past there would have been undiagnosed cases of cancer and therefore they would not have been reported.

"Our challenge is to encourage people to live healthier lifestyles to help lower their risk of cancer and to always go for screening, as early diagnosis saves lives."

Heart disease and other problems of the circulatory system were the second biggest killer, claiming 3,917 lives.

That is less than half the number of deaths (8,235) recorded 30 years ago.

Girls born last year can expect to live to 82 on average - four years more than men.

According to the latest projections, our population is expected to increase, passing 1.9 million by 2020 and 2 million by 2036.

Last year's birth rate was the lowest since 2006. Of the 24,277 births, more than half (12,956) were to mothers aged 30 and over.

The report also suggests people are leaving it later to get married.

Belfast Telegraph