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Cancer rates lower in Toronto than in the rest of Ontario: CCO

Cancer Care Ontario has released data suggesting that people in the GTA are dying of cancer at a rate less frequent than the provincial average. The Toronto Sun’s reporting suggests that there are three big reasons Torontonians are doing better than people elsewhere in Ontario: fewer smokers, lower rates of obesity and a mix of people from places with fewer instances of cancer.

The average cancer death rate of the province’s Local Health Integration Networks shows that 176.31 people per 100,000 died of cancer in 2007, according to previously unpublished numbers from Cancer Care Ontario’s 2010 Ontario Cancer Registry.

But in the GTA, that number drops to 138.38 people per 100,000 [who] died of cancer.

“The rates are lower because of the risk factors...there are lower risk factors compared to the rest of the province. There are lower smoking rates and lower obesity,” said Loraine Marrett, a senior scientist with CCO, adding that in the GTA there is a higher percentage of people from other countries that are not as prone to cancer.

So, the province’s health care budget can be thankful we’re a city of thin, multicultural non-smokers. That also sounds like a pretty succinct endorsement of the city’s dating scene. Not that we want to cheapen the serious good news of fewer cancer deaths in the world, but there’s no reason clouds can’t have multiple silver linings.

• GTA has lower cancer death rate than the rest of province [Toronto Sun]

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