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Planning and Implementation of Low-Dose Computed Tomography Lung Cancer Screening Programs in the United States

Rebecca Qiu
Amy Copeland
Erica Sercy
Nancy R. Porter
Karen Kane McDonnell
Jan Marie Eberth
CJON 2016, 20(1), 52-58 DOI: 10.1188/16.CJON.52-58

Background: One of the largest, most expensive randomized, controlled trials, the National Lung Screening Trial, found that annual low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) scans led to a 20% reduction in lung cancer deaths.

Objectives: This study describes the characteristics and program implementation barriers experienced by LDCT screening programs in the United States.

Methods: Using a mixed-methods approach, Lung Cancer Alliance Screening Centers of Excellence were surveyed and interviewed in 2013. Representatives from 65 centers completed an electronic questionnaire, followed by in-depth interviews with 13 physicians and nurse navigators regarding their institution’s screening programs.

Findings: Participants cited low patient demand and few physician referrals as barriers, but few centers reported needing additional staff or equipment. Those interviewed discussed the importance of a multidisciplinary team and overcoming barriers related to insurance reimbursement, costs, and physician knowledge to improve program implementation.

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