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Lung Cancer Screening Pilot for People at High Risk

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in Ontario. It is usually diagnosed at an advanced stage, when treatment options are limited. There is now a test that can detect lung cancer at an early stage, when treatment is more likely to be successful.

We recommend using low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) through an organized screening program to screen people at high risk of getting lung cancer. This recommendation is based on the evidence from the National Institute of Health’s National Lung Screening Trial, a randomized controlled trial with over 50,000 participants. The trial showed that people at high risk of lung cancer who were screened annually for 3 years with LDCT, as compared to those screened annually for 3 years with chest X-ray, experienced a 20 percent relative reduction in lung cancer mortality over 6 years.

Screening should only take place through this pilot because its organized screening infrastructure ensures greater protection against the potential harms of screening. Using LDCT to screen people on an opportunistic or ad hoc basis is not advised.

Starting in June, 2017, we initiated a pilot to help determine how to best implement organized lung cancer screening for people at high risk across Ontario.

The pilot sites are based out of the following hospitals in Ontario: The Ottawa Hospital, Renfrew Victoria Hospital, Health Sciences North in Sudbury and Lakeridge Health in Oshawa.

For more information

See our frequently asked questions for more information about the importance of organized lung cancer screening and general information about the pilot.

For specific questions regarding the Lung Cancer Screening Pilot for People at High Risk, please contact

Resources for Radiologists

Radiology Quality Assurance Program Manual

LDCT Lung Cancer Screening Reporting Template

LDCT Lung-RADS Version 1.1 Assessment Categories

Lung Cancer Screening Reporting Template Explanatory Notes