Newswise — The American College of Radiology (ACR) acknowledges the importance of the new American Cancer Society recommendations for lung cancer screening using computed tomography (CT) scans. In keeping, the ACR stresses that appropriate guidelines and practice standards are needed, and must be created and implemented, to ensure that patients nationwide have access to uniform, quality care and can expect a similar life-saving benefit from these exams as demonstrated in clinical trials.

The ACR is compiling and reviewing evidence in creation of ACR guidelines for CT lung cancer screening to ensure that these exams are performed using proper personnel, equipment, protocols and proper follow-up. More information, including the cost-effectiveness analysis from the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST), is expected to be published in the coming months which will help determine, direct and strengthen the sustainability of such a screening program. This scientific process is important to the long term viability of a CT lung cancer screening program and may take more than a year to complete.

Recent evidence, particularly results of the NLST, has shown that CT lung cancer screening is appropriate when performed in the context of careful patient selection and follow-up. The ACR supports the use of techniques shown to significantly reduce the number of people who die each year from lung cancer. We urge patience and support while the guidelines and standards infrastructure to create a safe, sustainable, and effective lung cancer screening program is created and put in place.

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