Long Beach Memorial's Lung Cancer Screening Program Recognized for its Work

Long Beach Memorial’s months-old Lung Cancer Screening Program at the MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute was recognized as a Screening Center of Excellence by the Lung Cancer Alliance, joining 300 other screening centers acknowledged for their work, hospital officials announced Thursday.

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“Low-dose CT screening has shown to be the only proven method to detect lung cancer at an early and treatable stage,” said Cathy Kopy, executive director of Long Beach Memorial’s MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute. “We are thrilled to be part of this elite group, setting an example for responsible screening practices across the country.”

Centers are recognized for providing clear information based on current evidence on who is a candidate for lung cancer screening, and complying with comprehensive standards based on best practices developed by professional bodies—such as the American College of Radiology (ACR), the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) and the International Early Lung Cancer Action Program (I-ELCAP), according to a hospital statement.

“This accreditation is a tribute to the tremendous efforts of our care teams and their dedication to providing high quality care to those receiving a lung cancer screening,” Kopy added.

Hospital officials said the program also helps tobacco users overcome their behavior and quit smoking through the establishment of the “Freedom from Smoking Program.”

“If we screen a patient and determine they don’t have lung cancer, there are still ways we can support them,” said Debbie Oates, a nurse at the institute. “Smoking is responsible for close to 90 percent of lung cancer cases and it’s also the most important risk factor that can be modified. To reduce their future risk, we encourage patients to participate in our smoking cessation program.”

According to the hospital, lung cancer is one of the leading causes of mortality in the country, killing more than 161,000 people per year.

For more information on the Lung Cancer Screening Program and Freedom from Smoking Program, call 800.MEMORIAL or visit MemorialCare.org/LungNoduleCenter.

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