Screening for lung cancer would cost billions

May 14, 2014 9:02 PM

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Screening for lung cancer would cost billions

Screening older adults for lung cancer – the USA's leading cancer killer – has the potential to save thousands of lives, but at a cost of billions of dollars to the Medicare program, a new study shows. The new analysis is being released as leaders of the Medicare program are considering whether to pay for the screenings.

Researchers found that screening eligible smokers and former smokers with low-dose CT scans would allow doctors to detect 54,900 to 141,900 additional lung cancers – mostly at earlier, more curable stages — within five years, depending on how many people get screened.

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