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Washington, DC [February 9, 2012]—Today, Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) moved lung cancer screening to a national platform by announcing a Framework for Lung Cancer Screening Excellence which includes a bill of rights for the at-risk public and guiding principles for lung cancer screening sites.
“The science is indisputable: screening those at high risk for lung cancer with low dose CT scans can save tens of thousands of lives each year,” said LCA President and CEO Laurie Fenton Ambrose. “We are moving forward now with thoughtful and responsible leaders to bring this benefit of screening to those at high risk for lung cancer safely, efficiently, and effectively,” she said.
By announcing the first of its kind national framework for lung cancer screening LCA is breaking through the status quo on lung cancer whose 15% survival rate has barely changed in forty years. More people die of lung cancer than the next four leading causes of cancer death - breast, prostate, colon, and pancreatic cancers- combined.
"If properly implemented, lung cancer screening has the potential to save more lives than anything we have done since the War on Cancer began," said James L. Mulshine, M.D. Associate Provost for Research and Vice President at Rush University Medical Center.
The National Framework states that the public has a right to know if they are at risk, that low dose CT screening can save their lives, and that they should only go to sites that follow certain Guiding Principles, which are also listed.
“Proper implementation must include a comprehensive Continuum of Care that includes a team of clinical specialists with expertise in pulmonary disease, thoracic surgery, radiology, and oncology,” said William R. Mayfield MD, chief surgical officer for WellStar Health Systems, whose group developed the well-designed protocol included in the Framework.
LCA also announced the formation of the Screening Excellence Forum of leaders in clinical and medical research fields, public health and industry to develop a dynamic system for collecting data and specimens and incorporating advances in imaging and biomedicine as they are validated.
Fenton-Ambrose noted that research into biomarkers, precancerous conditions and targeted therapies from all types of lung cancer can be accelerated with tissue and other biological samples collected during the screening process, which the Framework specifically encourages.
“The time has come. Too many lives are at stake to wait any longer,” she stated, noting that on average over 600 people a day are diagnosed with lung cancer and most will die, often within a few weeks or months.
To view Framework, please visit www.lungcanceralliance.org/screening.
Lung Cancer Alliance, www.lungcanceralliance.org, provides support and advocacy for those living with or at risk for lung cancer. LCA is committed to reversing decades of stigma and neglect by empowering those with or at risk for lung cancer, elevating awareness and changing health policy at both the federal and state level.
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