CLICK HERE to find out more about Lung Health Checks, which are currently being offered to people at selected doctors' surgeries in the Rhondda area of Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board.
The Lung Health Check Programme
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in Wales, accounting for more deaths than breast and colorectal cancer combined.
Evidence from randomised controlled trials shows that targeted screening of high-risk individuals with low-dose CT can improve outcomes. The National Lung Screening Trial and NELSON are two large randomised controlled trials demonstrating a 20% or greater relative reduction in lung cancer mortality with low-dose CT screening in high-risk individuals. Low-dose CT screening for lung cancer can be delivered as a “Lung Health Check”.
In February 2019, the Cancer Implementation Group approved funding to conduct a scoping review exploring the potential for Lung Health Checks (LHCs) in Wales. In September 2019, the Wales Cancer Network appointed a Clinical Lead (Dr Sinan Eccles, Consultant Respiratory Physician), Project Manager (Claire Wright) and Senior Project Support Officer (Roya Yadollahi) to lead the scoping review. The scoping report was completed in Autumn 2020 and made recommendations for the next steps for Wales, including:
The report and its recommendations were presented to the Cancer Implementation Group (CIG) in November 2020, which granted approval for the project team to develop a programme approach for a LHC pilot in Wales. Planning work to deliver the pilot has since progressed in partnership with Cwm Taf Morgannwg UHB, where the service will be delivered. As an overview, the pilot offers telephone lung health check appointments to eligible participants, aged 60-74 that have ever smoked, from selected GP Practices in the North Rhondda area. During this appointment a series of questions are asked, and participants who are identified as being at a higher risk of developing lung cancer, are offered a screening low-dose CT scan of the lungs. Smoking cessation support is offered to all current smokers.
The pilot is in progress, with the first invitations sent in early August 2023 and low dose CT scans from late September 2023. The pilot aims to offer low-dose CT scans to approximately 500 people and the learning from this is planned to be used to inform any future wider roll out within Wales. Further information in relation to the pilot is available on the Cwm Taf Morgannwg UHB website: Lung Health Checks - Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board (nhs.wales)