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News and Information
November 6, 2017
CHI Franciscan Health Recognizes Lung Cancer Awareness Month
Tacoma, Washington - CHI Franciscan Health is recognizing Lung Cancer Awareness Month, part of its NW Healthy initiative focused on health and wellness. CHI Franciscan is educating the public about lung cancer, its risk factors and prevention methods, and highlighting recommended screenings to diagnose the disease. Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in Washington state, and the second most commonly diagnosed type of cancer in the state. CHI Franciscan has a nationally recognized and comprehensive lung cancer program that includes screening and prevention, as well as lung cancer experts who specialize in diagnosis, treatment and follow-up care.
“With over 220,000 new cases of lung cancer diagnosed each year in the U.S., we must do more to combat this deadly disease,” said Dr. Baiya Krishnadasan, Medical Director, Cardiothoracic Surgery with CHI Franciscan Health. “Throughout the month of November, CHI Franciscan Health will continue to engage patients and families on what they need to know about lung cancer and provide support to those living with the disease."
On November 1, St. Joseph Medical Center, the flagship hospital of CHI Franciscan Health, hosted an Evening of Hope, an event that brought together lung cancer survivors, families, providers and staff for an evening of information, inspiration and remembrance. Lung cancer specialists answered questions and provided information about treatment options and clinical trials. CHI Franciscan Health is also supporting the American Cancer Society’s Great American Smoke Out on November 16.
“Lung cancer is often diagnosed in a late stage, at which point it is difficult to treat,” added Dr. Krishnadasan. “CHI Franciscan hospitals offer a low-dose CT screening for lung cancer for high risk patients. We recommend these screening for men and women, ages 55 to 75, who are current or former smokers with a smoking history of 30 pack-years. By diagnosing and treating lung cancer in its early stages, there is a far greater likelihood of cure.”
Tobacco use is the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US and the top risk factor for lung cancer. CHI Franciscan hospitals throughout the South Sound offer Freedom From Tobacco – free weekly support groups to help area residents who want to quit tobacco, newly quit, struggling with relapse, or helping a friend quit.
CHI Franciscan provides world-class cancer care that utilizes a collaborative, multidisciplinary approach that focuses on treating the whole person. Learn more about CHI Franciscan’s lung cancer program and treatment locations.
Lung cancer in Washington state
- Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in Washington state
- It is the second most commonly diagnosed type of cancer in Washington state
- In 2017, there will be an estimated 4,390 new cases and 3,100 deaths from lung cancer in Washington state
According to the American Cancer society
- Lung cancer is the second most common cancer in both men and women (not counting skin cancer), about 14% of all new cancers are lung cancers
- There are about 220,000 new cases of lung cancer annually in the United States and about 160,000 people die annually from the disease
- Lung cancer is by far the leading cause of cancer death among both men and women; about 1 out of 4 cancer deaths are from lung cancer
- Each year, more people die of lung cancer than of colon, breast, and prostate cancers combined
- Lung cancer mainly occurs in older people. About 2 out of 3 people diagnosed with lung cancer are 65 or older, while less than 2% are younger than 45. The average age at the time of diagnosis is about 70.
Smoking is not the only cause of lung cancer
- Exposure to radon gas is the second leading cause of lung cancer
- Other risk factors for lung cancer include secondhand smoke, air pollution, asbestos, and genetic factors
- People who have never smoked account for between 20,000 and 30,000 lung cancer diagnoses every year
CHI Franciscan Health
CHI Franciscan Health is a nonprofit health system based in Tacoma, Washington with $2.6 billion in net revenue and a team of nearly 12,000 doctors, nurses and staff that provide expert, compassionate medical care at eight acute care hospitals and approximately 200 primary and specialty care clinics in Pierce, King and Kitsap counties. This includes St. Anthony Hospital, Gig Harbor; St. Clare Hospital, Lakewood; St. Elizabeth Hospital, Enumclaw; St. Francis Hospital, Federal Way; St. Joseph Medical Center, Tacoma; Harrison Medical Center, Bremerton and Silverdale; Highline Medical Center, Burien; and Regional Hospital, Burien. Started in 1891 by the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, today CHI Franciscan Health is one of the largest health systems in Washington state. The system spans more than 1,100 acute care beds, a credentialed medical staff of more than 1,500 including more than 800 employed physicians providing specialties in cardiovascular care, cancer care, orthopedics and sports medicine, neurosciences and women’s care. CHI Franciscan’s mission focuses on creating healthier communities, including caring for the poor and underserved. In 2015, the organization provided $141 million in community benefit, including $10 million in charity care.