FROM THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PREVENTIVE MEDICINE

The average annual cost for skin cancer treatment more than doubled from 2002 to 2011, a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found.

From 2002 to 2006, the average annual skin cancer treatment cost was $3.6 billion, while for 2007-2011, the average annual cost was $8.1 billion, an increase of about 126%. The cost of nonmelanoma skin cancers increased 74%, from $2.7 billion to $4.8 billion, but the average annual cost for melanoma cancers increased about 280%, from $864 million to $3.3 billion, according to the CDC (Am. J. Prev. Med. 2014 Nov. 9 [ doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2014.08.036 ]).

From 2002 to 2006, the average annual number of adults treated for skin cancer was 3.4 million, which increased to an average annual number of 4.9 million for 2007-2011. The average annual cost per person for all skin cancers increased by 57%, from $1,044 for 2002-2006 to $1,643 for 2007-2011, while the average cost for melanomas more than doubled from $2,320 to $4,780. The increase in annual cost for nonmelanoma skin cancers was more modest; only a 25% increase, from $882 to $1,105, was noted between the two time periods, the CDC reported.

The average annual cost for all cancer treatment rose from $67.3 billion for 2002-2006 to $87.8 billion for 2007-2011, an increase of $20.5 billion. While skin cancer treatment costs represented only 5% of all treatment costs in 2002-2006, the increase in skin cancer costs was 22% of the total increase, so from 2007 to 2011, skin cancer represented 9% of all treatment costs, according to data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey .

lfranki@frontlinemedcom.com

Ads