(HealthDay News) — Cancer risk awareness varies by socioeconomic status, according to the results of the International Public Opinion Survey on Cancer.

The Union for International Cancer Control commissioned a global survey of more than 15,000 adults in 20 countries to understand the public’s experiences, views, and behaviors around cancer.

Three in five people surveyed indicated that they are or have been affected by cancer, either themselves or through knowing someone else with the disease. Similarly, 60 percent believe they will develop cancer during their lifetime, regardless of their age, education, or income status. Most people (87 percent) are aware of the main cancer risks, with tobacco use most recognized (63 percent). Nearly seven out of 10 people surveyed reported that they took a preventive measure to reduce their risk of cancer in the last 12 months. Gaps in cancer risk awareness and health-promoting behaviors exist between higher and lower socioeconomic groups.

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“This survey and its findings are the catalyst needed to ensure that policies and government actions serve the needs of the people, so that everyone everywhere has the best chance for a better life,” H.R.H. Princess Dina Mired of Jordan, president of the Union for International Cancer Control, said in a statement.


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International Public Opinion Survey on Cancer