Fitzpatrick’s bipartisan bill would increase lung cancer screening rates nationwide

Bipartisan legislation introduced on June 22 by U.S. Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) aims to increase the number of Americans who are screened for lung cancer and reduce barriers to preventative care in the nation’s underserved areas.

“Lung cancer claims the most American lives annually of any form of cancer, accounting for nearly 25 percent of cancer deaths,” Rep. Fitzpatrick said. “The single most effective way that we can improve outcomes is by increasing accessibility to early-detection screenings, and that is why I am proud to join my colleagues on this bipartisan effort.”

Rep. Fitzpatrick signed on as the lead original cosponsor of the Increasing Access to Lung Cancer Screening Act, H.R. 4286, which is sponsored by U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins (D-NY). The members serve as co-chairs of the House Cancer Caucus.

If enacted, H.R. 4286 would amend title XIX of the Social Security Act to require coverage under Medicaid program state plans for annual lung cancer screening with no cost-sharing for individuals for whom screening is recommended by U.S. Preventive Services Task Force guidelines, according to the congressional record bill summary.

Additionally, H.R. 4286 would expand coverage under Medicaid for counseling and pharmacotherapy for cessation of tobacco use, the summary says.

“Many Americans are not receiving the annual screenings they need,” said Rep. Higgins. “I am proud to join my colleagues in introducing this bipartisan legislation because it will reduce barriers to preventative screenings and extend coverage to those experiencing the greatest risks. Together we are taking an important step toward ending cancer as we know it.”

H.R. 4286 is supported by the American Lung Association, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, the American Association for Cancer Research, Lungevity, the Prevent Cancer Foundation, the GO2 Foundation for Lung Cancer, the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, and the Moffitt Cancer Center.