Cancer cases predicted to rise by 77 percent worldwide by 2050, World Health Organisation says

The World Health Organisation says cancer cases will grow by 75 percent worldwide by 2050.

Meanwhile, here, Te Aho o te Kahu Cancer Control Agency, says patient numbers will double in just 20 years.

So, the Cancer Society is calling for a long-term strategy to help cope with the increase.

As the world's economies grow, so do the diseases of affluence. We're already some way down that track.

"We've got growth in population, we've got longer life expectancy of population, and then we've got the things that cause cancer like tobacco, alcohol and sugar, obesity," said Dr George Laking, medical director of the Cancer Society.

Avoid those and your chances of avoiding cancer rise.

Dr Laking works with cancer patients and was a patient himself.

After a colleague spotted something amiss, he got checked up and was successfully treated for neck cancer seven months ago.

Until recently, the Cancer Society had estimated 71 people were being diagnosed with cancer daily, but they just increased that to 74.

And that figure will only keep rising.

Dr Laking told Newshub we now have a Cancer Control Agency Te Aho o te Kahu, plus a publicly-funded health system, but perhaps we lack long-term planning.

"The trouble that we have often is a three-year political horizon for thinking about long-term problems like this," he said.

"We need to make our preparations and marshall our resources over a 25-year, 100-year type of timeframe."

Health Minister Dr Shane Reti said officials will consider the WHO's report and provide advice, but he's adamant Aotearoa will lift its cancer management game.