Annual Cancer Death Toll in the US Almost Equals the Population of Vermont – Putting Numbers

This past week, breast cancer claimed the life of a 55 year old US astronaut, Janice Voss. Ms. Voss is one of the approximately 1,575 people who die from cancer every day in the US. That’s 575,000 people per year. New cancers? 1,600,000 per year. The numbers are here, among many places.

Numbers are abstract, so let’s consider the numbers in a context. 575,000 annual cancer deaths is not far from Vermont’s population of 621,000. What would we do if a "terrorist" killed everyone in Vermont?

In five years, the annual US cancer death toll of 575,000 totals up to approximately 2,875,000 people. That number is just under the 2,990,000 people living in three New England states. Specifically, the death toll is just under the combined populations of Vermont (621,000), New Hampshire (1,318,000) and Rhode Island (1,053,000). Again, imagine what society would do if a "terrorist" wiped out the populations of 3 New England states.

Now go back to the new cancer number of 1,600,000 new cancers per year. In two years, that number exceeds the populations of Vermont, New Hampshire and and Rhode Island. How can we let that continue to happen?



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About Kirk

Since becoming a lawyer in 1983, Kirk’s over 30 years of practice have focused on advising a wide range of corporations, associations, and individuals (as both plaintiffs and defendants) on both tort and commercial law issues centered around “mass torts.”


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