Lung Cancer Screening: The Views of Patients and Physicians

Investigator: Celia Kaplan, DrPH
Sponsor: University of California Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (TRDRP)

Location(s): United States


Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. among both men and women. Most cases of lung cancer will be discovered at advanced stages. Consequently, great efforts have been made over the last few decades to identify a screening test. After evaluating the benefits and harms, in December 2013 the USPSTF recommended (grade B: high certainty that net benefit is moderate to substantial) annual lung cancer screening with LDCT scans for high-risk patients. The USPSTF recommends that individuals interested in LDCT screening, together with their physicians, should weigh currently known benefits with limitations and risks to make a shared decision about screening for lung cancer. In February 2015, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services provided final support to cover the costs for LDCT.

Aim 1. Conduct a qualitative assessment of patient and primary care physician (PCP) factors associated with LDCT lung cancer screening.
Aim 1a. Assess patients’ understanding of LDCT screening; practices, attitudes and beliefs toward LDCT screening; barriers and facilitators to LDCT screening, including access; and the preferred methods of communication of risk, benefits and harms during LDCT screening discussions.
Aim 1b. Assess PCPs’ understanding of LDCT screening; attitudes and beliefs about LDCT screening; perceived system-, physician- and patient-level barriers and facilitators to LDCT screening; preferred methods of communication during screening discussions; and preferred methods of receiving information at primary care clinics.
Aim 2. Conduct a survey of PCPs practicing in the SF Bay Area to assess lung cancer screening practices, attitudes and beliefs.