This is a process which lets us compare the cancer rate in one community with the rate in another. This is important because cancer occurs at different rates in different age groups. To understand it, think of a retirement community that is home to many senior citizens. Then, think of a community known for its good schools that would attract families with children. We would expect the first community to have a higher rate of cancer because cancer occurs more often in older people. But even a small number of cancer cases in the community with younger people might be more than we would expect. To compare the number of new cases in both communities, we must first age-adjust the rates. There are two methods used in age-adjustment. The direct method of age-adjustment results in age-adjusted incidence rates. The indirect method, which is used for areas with smaller population, results in expected number of cancer cases adjusted for age.
Cancer Registry
The New York State Cancer Registry is part of the Department of Health. As required under Public Health Law, the Cancer Registry collects information on all New Yorkers diagnosed with cancer.
Expected Incidence
The anticipated number of newly diagnosed cases of a disease in a certain area or population.
The number of newly diagnosed cases of a disease.
Incidence Rate
This is the number of new cases divided by the number of people who are at risk for developing the disease (the population). The incidence rates shown in the county maps describe the number of people newly diagnosed with cancer in a county divided by the number of people living in the county. The rates are done separately for men and women and are given as the number of cases for each 100,000 people in the population. People who were diagnosed with cancer before the time period covered by the maps are not included.