The Lung Cancer Screening Program was inaugurated on July 11, 2017. Three patients were seen that first day, and in a year’s time, 211 patients have been screened. Of those, one patient was diagnosed with Adenocarcinoma, and total of 44 were recommended for some kind of follow-up (low dose CT scan, CT with contrast, or Pet scan.)
According to oncology nurse practitioner Michele Williams, who coordinates the Lung Cancer Screening Program under the direction of pulmonologist Greg Oliver, MD, the program is experiencing a steady increase in demand as word has spread. “We have been seeing patients on Tuesdays will be opening up Thursdays for screenings in Easton,” she explains. “We also are excited to begin the screening program in Chestertown — starting July 18, we will be seeing patients there two Wednesdays each month.”
Getting the program off to such a strong start required extensive outreach to the regional physician and advance practice provider community as well as to other referral sources and the public at large. Williams visited several primary care practices in Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties, and conducted presentations at large group meetings such as UM SRH Management Forum, the UM SRH Nursing Research Council, and a health care conference at Chesapeake College. She also engaged local health department representatives, conducted to “Ask the Expert” presentations open to interested community members, and participated in outreach to local news outlets as well as social media.
“Medical professionals and other referral sources throughout the five county region recognize that the Lung Cancer Screening Program can save lives,” says Williams. It’s very gratifying to help former and current smokers take this important step to protect their health.”