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RadonActionPlanThere is still much more work to do on radon. Many organizations have had a hand in bringing this National Radon Action Plan to fruition. We thank you and everyone who has given their support to help bring to light the leading cause of death in the home, the leading environmental cause of cancer mortality and a leading cause of lung cancer that no one seems to know about.

Read the National Radon Action Plan from the Citizens For Radioactive Radon Reduction: national-radon-action-plan

Members of the Lung Cancer Action Network (LungCAN), a collaborative group of lung cancer advocacy organizations, respectfully request that Congress fund the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) State Indoor Radon Grants (SIRG) FY2016 in the amount of $8.1 million. In 2003, the National Academy of Sciences estimated that 21,000 people die each year from lung cancer related to radioactive radon gas exposure. Radon is not detectable with human senses; it is the number one cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers; it is the second leading cause of lung cancer, overall. An estimated one in 15 homes across the nation has high levels of radon; however, …Read More.

Radon is a cancer-causing, radioactive gas that occurs naturally from the decay of uranium which are found at different levels in rock and soil around the world. Radon can enter your home’s indoor air through the soil and the water, although, radon in water usually stems from well water or from a public water supply system that uses ground water.

Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer, and the number one cause among non-smokers. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) estimates that approximately 21,000 lives are taken each year by radon induced lung cancer.

The good news is that at risk radon levels are easy to fix! The only way to know if you home is safe from radon is to test it. Even a neighbor’s test will not be a good indication of whether or not your home is safe from radon. According to the EPA, radon levels can vary from home to home. The only way to know your home is safe from radon is to test it.

For more information on radon, see the EPA’s City Guide on Radon and view and share our infographic below.

For a limited time you can get a discounted radon test kit through our partner AirChek, here .http://bit.ly/Radon14 Like this infographic? Scroll down to the bottom and embed it on your own blog or website. Radon-Infographic

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposes that the evidence is sufficient to add a lung cancer screening counseling and shared decision making visit, and for appropriate beneficiaries, screening for lung cancer with low dose computed tomography (LDCT), once per year, as an additional preventive service benefit under the Medicare program only if all of the following criteria are met:

Beneficiary eligibility criteria:

  • Age 55-74 years;
  • Asymptomatic (no signs or symptoms of lung disease);
  • Tobacco smoking history of at least 30 pack-years (one pack-year = smoking one pack per day for one year; 1 pack = 20 cigarettes);
  • Current smoker or one who has quit smoking within the last 15 years; and
  • A written order for LDCT lung cancer screening that meets the following criteria:
    • For the initial LDCT lung cancer screening service:  the beneficiary must receive a written order for LDCT lung cancer screening during a lung cancer screening counseling and shared decision making visit, furnished by a physician [as defined in Section 1861(r)(1) of the Social Security Act (the Act)] or qualified non-physician practitioner (physician assistant, nurse practitioner, or clinical nurse specialist as defined in §1861(aa)(5) of the Act).
    • For subsequent LDCT lung cancer screenings:  the beneficiary must receive a written order, which may be furnished during any appropriate visit (for example: during the Medicare annual wellness visit, tobacco cessation counseling services, or evaluation and management visit) with a physician (as defined in Section 1861(r)(1) of the Act) or qualified non-physician practitioner (physician assistant, nurse practitioner, or clinical nurse specialist as defined in Section 1861(aa)(5) of the Act).
  • A lung cancer screening counseling and shared decision making visit includes the following elements (and is appropriately documented in the beneficiary’s medical records):
    • Determination of beneficiary eligibility including age, absence of signs or symptoms of lung disease, a specific calculation of cigarette smoking pack-years; and if a former smoker, the number of years since quitting;
    • Shared decision making, including the use of one or more decision aids, to include benefits, harms, follow-up diagnostic testing, over-diagnosis, false positive rate, and total radiation exposure;
    • Counseling on the importance of adherence to annual LDCT lung cancer screening, impact of comorbidities and ability or willingness to undergo diagnosis and treatment;
    • Counseling on the importance of maintaining cigarette smoking abstinence if former smoker, or smoking cessation if current smoker and, if appropriate, offering additional Medicare-covered tobacco cessation counseling services; and
    • If appropriate, the furnishing of a written order for lung cancer screening with LDCT.  Written orders for both initial and subsequent LDCT lung cancer screenings must contain the following information, which must also be documented in the beneficiaries’ medical records:
      • Beneficiary date of birth,
      • Actual pack-year smoking history (number);
      • Current smoking status, and for former smokers, the number of years since quitting smoking;
      • Statement that the beneficiary is asymptomatic; and
      • NPI of the ordering practitioner.

Radiologist eligibility criteria:

  • Current certification with the American Board of Radiology or equivalent organization;
  • Documented training in diagnostic radiology and radiation safety;
  • Involvement in the supervision and interpretation of at least 300 chest computed tomography acquisitions in the past 3 years; and
  • Documented participation in continuing medical education in accordance with current American College of Radiology standards.

Radiology imaging center eligibility criteria:

For purposes of Medicare coverage of lung cancer LDCT screening, an eligible LDCT screening facility is one that:

  • Has participated in past lung cancer screening trials, such as the National Lung Screening Trial, or an accredited advanced diagnostic imaging center with training and experience in LDCT lung cancer screening;
  • Must use LDCTs with an effective radiation dose less than 1.5 mSv; and
  • Must collect and submit data to a CMS-approved national registry for each LDCT lung cancer screening performed. The data collected and submitted to a CMS-approved national registry must include, at minimum, all of the following elements:
Data Type Minimum Required Data Elements
Facility Identifier
Radiologist (reading) National Provider Identifier (NPI)
Patient Identifier
Ordering Practitioner National Provider Identifier (NPI)
Demographics Date of birth, gender, race/ethnicity.
Indication Lung cancer LDCT screening – absence of signs or symptoms (y/n)
Smoking history Current status (current, former, never),
If former smoker, years since quitting,
Pack-years as reported by the ordering practitioner.
CT scanner Manufacturer, Model.
Effective radiation dose CT dose index, tube current-time, tube voltage, scanning time, scanning volume, pitch, slice thickness (collimation).
Screening exam results Baseline or repeat screen;
Screen date;
Clinically significant non-lung cancer findings (y/n), if yes, list;
Nodule (y/n), if yes: number, type (calcified or non-calcified; solid or semi-solid), size and location of each nodule.
Diagnostic follow-up of abnormal findings within 1 year Low dose chest CT,
Diagnostic chest CT,
Bronchoscopy,
Non-surgical biopsy,
Resection (with dates),
Other (please specify).
Lung cancer incidence within 1 year Incident cancers,
Date of diagnosis,
Stage,
Histology,
Period of follow-up for incidence.
Health outcomes All cause mortality,
Lung cancer mortality,
Death within 60 days after most invasive diagnostic procedure.

For purposes of Medicare coverage of LDCT lung cancer screening, national registries interested in seeking CMS approval must send a request either electronically or hard copy to CMS (Note: It is not necessary to submit both electronic and hard copies of requests).

Please send electronic requests via email to caginquiries@cms.hhs.gov. Hard copy requests may be sent to the following address:

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Center for Clinical Standards and Quality
Director, Coverage and Analysis Group
ATTN:  Lung Cancer LDCT Screening
Mail Stop: S3-02-01
7500 Security Blvd.
Baltimore, MD 21244

CMS is seeking comments on the proposed decision. We will respond to public comments in a final decision memorandum, as required by §1862(l)(3) of the Social Security Act.

This article was originally published on cms.gov and can be found here. http://go.cms.gov/1zHH6RT

NEW YORK—(October 21, 2014) In a recently launched online social media campaign, LungCAN members and their constituents are fighting back with Tweets, Facebook posts, and social ads with a message that is loud and clear: lung cancer screening saves lives and it disproportionately affects seniors, which is why Medicare should include lung cancer screening as a covered Medicare benefit.

LungCAN’s Medicare campaign, blended with the recent online #WhipLungCancer campaign, is part of a three-pronged campaign approach orchestrated by Social Strand Media, a boutique San Francisco based social media agency. The multi-part campaign addresses urging Medicare to cover lung cancer screening, participation in Genentech’s Lung Cancer Project to address stigma and raise awareness of low treatment rates for lung cancer patients, and testing your home for radon, the second leading cause of lung cancer, during the holidays. Phase one of the campaign commenced in October and phase two and three will run through November and December. Click to read full press release.