Table 1

Characteristics of sub-Saharan Africa countries included in case study to evaluate urban–rural access to cancer referral centres

Total population (thousands)*51 39356 31812 30218 143
GDP per capita (US$ current)*3468324022521311
Life expectancy (years)*66656964
Population density (persons per km2)*90.363.6498.7192.4
% Rural*73668383
Districts (no)471713027
Health centres (no)†1038675486457
Average population per health centre†49 51283 43425 31339 700
Median district-level travel time to health centre (min, median (IQR))†44.8 (20.0–74.5)84.9 (53.2–132.7)19.5 (14.4–26.9)55.7 (49.2–67.2)
Top five most frequent cancers‡Breast, cervix, oesophagus, prostate, colorectumCervix, prostate, breast, colorectum, Kaposi sarcomaCervix, breast, colorectum, stomach, liverCervix, Kaposi sarcoma, oesophagus, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, breast
Total cancer deaths‡32 98728 610766213 779
Age-standardised cancer mortality rate per 100 000‡129.294.6104.8123.7
Cancer referral centres (no)§121066
Median district-level travel time to cancer research centre (min, median (IQR))†127.7 (73.2–220.4)356.0 (211.3–647.1)59.9 (44.7–92.8)296.2 (238.1–520.1)
  • *World Bank Development Indicators (2018).28

  • †Authors’ analysis of Maina et al. Geospatial Database of Health Facilities in sub-Saharan Africa (2019) (see text).30

  • ‡International Agency for Research on Cancer, Cancer Today Country Factsheets (2018).29

  • §Global Oncology Project Map (2020).32

  • GDP, gross domestic product.