The Center for Lung Research in Honor of Wayne Gittinger generously funds the infrastructure for a long-term stable research program. Outside funding assists in advancing unique initiatives and recognizes and validates the relevance and importance of the work performed within the program.
A road map for improving lung cancer screening in American Indian and Alaska Native populations
In 2020, we were awarded a grant in the amount of $100,000 from the Lung Ambition Alliance called Initiatives in Lung Cancer Care (ILC2). ILC2 endeavors to support the delivery of quality lung cancer care around the world by facilitating patient-centric solutions. The award is to study lung cancer screening in American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations in Washington State, working towards increasing lung cancer screening awareness, education and screening rates.
Lung cancer screening is a lifesaving innovation, utilized widely in Washington State, but is not equally accessed by all communities. American Indians and Alaska Natives have a particularly high burden of lung cancer but are barely represented in lung cancer screening programs as participant demographics skew heavily toward white populations from metropolitan areas. Targeted research is required to understand the root of this problem and afford this vulnerable community the benefits of lung cancer screening.
We are working to identify, quantify and understand current issues in access to lung cancer screening services by Washington American Indian and Alaska Native populations. The project will continue with the identification and facilitation of partnerships within American Indian and Alaska Native communities, working together to recognize and overcome additional barriers to equitable lung cancer screening. In conjunction with Native partners, we aim to develop culturally, and geographically tailored educational tool kits targeted both towards patients and providers, eventually raising awareness and engagement in lung cancer screening across the region.