Northern Light Health reported a significant increase in the number of lung cancer screenings conducted in March. On average, Northern Light performs approximately 300 tests monthly and March reported 427 lung cancer screenings, a 33 percent increase. The system attributes this success to heightened awareness in the community that early-stage lung cancer is treatable, and screening saves lives.
Early-stage lung cancer often shows no signs or symptoms and, while there are many treatment options available, national statistics show that only 10 percent of eligible patients receive lung cancer screening despite lung cancer claiming more lives than breast, prostate, and colon cancer combined. Lung cancer screening consists of a low dose CT scan that provides an image of the whole chest, potentially detecting other findings. We encourage people to speak with their primary care provider to see if they qualify for a lung cancer screening.
Amy McClary, BSN, RN, nurse navigator, Lung Cancer Screening Program, Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center, says, “Lung cancer screening is easy, requires no IVs or dyes, and this five-minute scan can truly save a patient’s life. I would encourage anyone between the ages of 50 and 80, who is a current smoker or who has quit within the last 15 years, to talk to their primary care provider to see if a lung cancer screening is right for them. Be open and honest with your healthcare provider about your smoking history as it could make the difference in eligibility for this very important screening.”
To learn more about the Northern Light Lung Cancer Screening Program, visit northernlight.org/emmclung or call 207-973-5822.
If you want to learn more about the lung cancer screening program and see how it works, watch this video or read the article here: Northern Light Health | Annual Report 2022 (https://northernlighthealth.org/AR22/index.html#keeping-it-local).