The British Columbia government has announced a new lung cancer screening program it says is the first of its kind in Canada aimed at early diagnosis of the deadliest form of the disease.
Premier John Horgan says 70 per cent of all lung cancers are diagnosed at an advanced stage, but the program expected to begin by the spring of 2022 would improve survival rates.
Horgan says the target population includes heavy smokers or those who have smoked heavily in the past and are between the ages of 55 and 74.
Dr. Kim Chi, CEO of BC Cancer, says six British Columbians die every day of lung cancer and early detection as well as smoking cessation programs are keys to changing that.
Chi says poor air quality and air pollution have been linked to cancers including lung cancer, so wildfires due to climate change mean that will be a problem for the future.
Smoke from fires in the United States has caused hazy skies and poor air quality in much of British Columbia and parts of Alberta.
© The Canadian Press