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LCA Applauds New Evidence Supporting Lung Screening

Adds To Growing Body of Evidence Supporting Integration of Lung Cancer Screening into Public Health

WASHINGTON, DC [June 25, 2013]—Today, Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) applauded a long awaited cost-benefit analysis, presented at a meeting of the National Cancer Institute’s Board of Scientific Advisors and National Cancer Advisory Board, which concluded that a CT lung cancer screening program based on NCI’s lung cancer screening trial meets generally accepted criteria for cost-effectiveness of a screening test.

“This report is an important contribution to our ongoing efforts to ensure that those at high risk for lung cancer have access to responsible CT screening and  brings us closer to the day when this life-saving benefit will be fully integrated into our nation’s healthcare,” stated Lung Cancer Alliance President and CEO, Laurie Fenton Ambrose. 

This follow-on analysis of the economics of CT lung cancer screening comes after the NCI’s National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) proved the mortality benefit of screening a high risk population in 2010. 

The NCI study is consistent with other research documenting the cost –benefit of CT lung screening. Lung Cancer Alliance, which along with Legacy for Health, commissioned the international actuarial firm Milliman, Inc., to conduct a similar cost benefit study that is currently pending peer-review publication.

Two previous actuarial analyses by Milliman, Inc., indicated that screening those at high risk has the potential to save up to 70,000 lives a year and demonstrated that it would cost less to insure as a covered benefit than mammography or other screening protocols.

Lung Cancer Alliance has been a strong proponent of responsible CT screening for lung cancer.  Last year, LCA released its “National Framework for Excellence in Lung Cancer Screening and Continuum of Care,” to ensure that responsible high quality screening is available to those at risk within a multi-disciplinary setting following best published practice guidelines. Community-based and academic medical centers nationwide have adopted the National Framework and are standardizing the screening practices.  

 “We have learned important hard lessons from other cancer screening processes and how these scientific breakthroughs were transitioned into public health benefit,” continued Fenton-Ambrose. “We need to be sure that CT screening is done right – right from the start – as screening is not a snapshot. It is a multidisciplinary process that if equitably deployed can save tens of thousands of lives each year needlessly lost to lung cancer. That is why the National Framework has been a priority for us since its establishment February 2012 – and will continue until CT screening is fully implemented within our nation’s public health infrastructure.”