April is recognized annually as National Cancer Control Month, a time to draw attention to advances made in the fight against cancer and raise awareness for prevention and screening methods for early detection.
Lung cancer in particular is one area in which screening techniques have received increased attention and support for their role in early detection of disease in high-risk patients.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced that screenings for lung cancer with low dose computed tomography (LDCT) will now be covered by Medicare.
A long-awaited decision, this is the first time Medicare has covered lung cancer screening and is important news for Medicare patients seeking preventive services.
Medicare beneficiaries who meet the required criteria will be eligible for annual lung cancer screenings with LDCT. To be eligible, patients must meet all criteria outlined in the official announcement available here.
Coverage includes a counseling visit and shared decision-making on the benefits and risks of lung cancer screening. A key goal of low-dose CT screening for lung cancer is detection of early stage disease, when the cancer is more likely not to have spread and is typically considered easier to treat.
If you or a loved one is screened for lung cancer and the disease is detected, contact us to learn about treatment options available through Hollings Cancer Center and MUSC’s Thoracic Oncology program. Click here to request an appointment.