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Vimeo

Overall cancer death rates have decreased across the U.S. but are higher in rural parts of the country than in urban areas, according to a CDC report released today. It's the agency's first complete description of cancer in rural and urban America.

The takeaway: Death rates from cancer are higher in rural areas than urban ones but the incidence of new cases is lower in rural parts of the country.

"Differences between nonmetropolitan and metropolitan counties in cancer incidence might reflect differences in risk factors such as cigarette smoking, obesity, and physical inactivity, whereas differences in cancer death rates might reflect disparities in access to health care and timely diagnosis and treatment," the authors wrote.

The details:

  • Death rates from cancer were 180 deaths per 100,000 people in rural areas v. 158 per 100,000 in urban centers.
  • New cases of cancer: overall the rates were slightly lower in rural areas (442 cases per 100,000 people v. 457 cases in urban areas)
  • But... Rural America has higher rates of new cases and deaths from lung cancer and other types related to smoking and tobacco use. The incidences of colorectal and cervical cancers — which can largely be prevented by screening — are also higher.
  • Rural risk factors: smoking, obesity, lack of exercise and limited access to health care for diagnosis and treatment, per the report.

Context: The CDC reported earlier this year that life expectancy has declined for Americans living in rural regions (about 15% of the population) and people living in these areas are more likely to die from the top five causes of death (heart disease, cancer, unintentional injury, chronic lower respiratory disease and stroke) than people in metropolitan areas.

Go deeper

Justice Department drops insider trading inquiry against Sen. Richard Burr

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) walking through the Senate Subway in the U.S. Capitol in December 2020. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

The Department of Justice told Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) on Tuesday that it will not move forward with insider trading charges against him.

Why it matters: The decision, first reported by the New York Times, effectively ends the DOJ's investigation into the senator's stock sell-off that occurred after multiple lawmakers were briefed about the coronavirus' potential economic toll. Burr subsequently stepped down as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Netflix tops 200 million global subscribers

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Netflix said that it added another 8.5 million global subscribers last quarter, bringing its total number of paid subscribers globally to more than 200 million.

The big picture: Positive fourth-quarter results show Netflix's resiliency, despite increased competition and pandemic-related production headwinds.

Janet Yellen plays down debt, tax hike concerns in confirmation hearing

Treasury Secretary nominee Janet Yellen at an event in December. Photo: Alex Wong via Getty Images

Janet Yellen, Biden's pick to lead the Treasury Department, pushed back against two key concerns from Republican senators at her confirmation hearing on Tuesday: the country's debt and the incoming administration's plans to eventually raise taxes.

Driving the news: Yellen — who's expected to win confirmation — said spending big now will prevent the U.S. from having to dig out of a deeper hole later. She also said the Biden administration's priority right now is coronavirus relief, not raising taxes.

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