Breast Cancer in Mexico: A Pressing Priority

Posted: 7 Apr 2009

See all articles by Felicia Marie Knaul

Felicia Marie Knaul

World Health Organization; Fundacion Mexicana para la Salud

Gustavo Nigenda

Medical University of Sofia

Rafael Lozano

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Ana Langer

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Julio Frenk

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Date Written: November 2008

Abstract

Breast cancer is a serious threat to the health of women globally, and an unrecognised priority in middle-income countries. This paper presents data from Mexico. It shows that breast cancer accounts for more deaths than cervical cancer since 2006. It is the second cause of death for women aged 30-54 and affects all socio-economic groups. Data on detection, although under-reported, show 6,000 new cases in 1990, and a projected increase to over 16,500 per year by 2020. Further, the majority of cases are self-detected and only 10% of all cases are detected in stage one. Mexico's social security systems cover approximately 40-45% of the population, and include breast cancer treatment. As of 2007, the rest of the population has the right to breast cancer treatment through the Popular Health Insurance. Despite these entitlements, services are lacking and interventions for early detection, particularly mammography, are very limited. As of 2006 only 22% of women aged 40-69 reported having a mammogram in the past year. Barriers exist on both the demand and supply sides. Lobbying, education, awareness-building and an articulated policy response will be important to ensure expanded coverage, access to and take-up of both treatment and early detection.

Keywords: breast cancer and screening, cervical cancer, socio-economic status, health policy and programmes, Mexico

Suggested Citation

Knaul, Felicia Marie and Nigenda, Gustavo and Lozano, Rafael and Langer, Ana and Frenk, Julio, Breast Cancer in Mexico: A Pressing Priority (November 2008). Reproductive Health Matters, Vol. 16, No. 32, pp., 113-123, November 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1373745

Felicia Marie Knaul (Contact Author)

World Health Organization ( email )

20 Avenue Appia
Geneva 27, CH-1211
Switzerland

Fundacion Mexicana para la Salud ( email )

Periférico Sur 4809
El Arenal Tepepan
Mexico DF, 01700

Gustavo Nigenda

Medical University of Sofia

Bialo more str. N 8
Sofia, 1527
Bulgaria

Rafael Lozano

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

No Address Available

Ana Langer

Harvard University - T.H. Chan School of Public Health ( email )

677 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA MA 02115
United States

Julio Frenk

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation ( email )

P.O. Box 23350
Seattle, WA 98102
United States

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