February 05, 2014
Medical task force recommends yearly screenings for adults at high risk
Richmond, Va. (Feb. 5, 2014) — In an effort to promote early detection of lung cancer, HCA Virginia is offering lower cost screenings for all individuals who may be at higher risk for the disease. In addition, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is offering the screening to its members who meet the high-risk criteria set out by the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF).
Last month, the USPSTF released guidelines that recommend yearly screenings for healthy adults between the ages of 55 and 80 and at high risk for lung cancer. Preventive services given an “A” or “B” rating by USPSTF must be reimbursed by insurers at no cost to patients under the Affordable Care Act.
“Low-dose CT scans are able to detect lung cancer at its earliest, most treatable stages,” said Jamie Hey, M.D., Pulmonary Associates of Richmond. “Providing our patients with greater affordability of such an effective tool is a step toward ensuring the best outcomes for those in higher risk populations.”
The screening process involves low-dose computed tomography scans or CT scans. Patients benefit from a consultation, a low-radiation-dose chest CT scan and follow up appointment with a lung specialist.
”We are happy to be able to partner with HCA Virginia to provide early detection lung screenings to Anthem members,” said Jay Schukman, M.D., Anthem’s chief medical director. “Prevention is one of our areas of emphasis and whenever we can work with our partners to provide these types of services, it is a win-win for everyone.”
According to the National Cancer Institute, lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. In 2013, more than 228,000 Americans were diagnosed with the disease.
HCA Virginia's CT lung screening program is the longest running in Richmond and the state of Virginia. For more information, visit http://hcavirginia.com/service/cancer-care or call 804.HCA.CARE.