New Survey: Most Americans Don't Know About Lifesaving Lung Cancer Screening

American Lung Association data examine Americans' awareness, attitudes and beliefs about lung cancer
Published: Oct. 19, 2021 at 6:00 AM EDT|Updated: Nov. 1, 2021 at 12:01 AM EDT

CHICAGO, Nov. 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Survey data released today show that only 36% of people know that lung cancer screening is available and 29% know that lung cancer is the leading cancer killer of woman and men. Today, the American Lung Association's LUNG FORCE initiative released the 2021 Lung Health Barometer, a new national survey that examines awareness, attitudes and beliefs about lung health and lung cancer.

American Lung Association logo (PRNewsfoto/American Lung Association)
American Lung Association logo (PRNewsfoto/American Lung Association)

"While lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S., the five-year survival rate has increased 33% in the past 10 years thanks to advancements in treatment, research and lifesaving lung cancer screening," said Harold Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association. "Although only 29% of survey respondents knew that lung cancer was the leading cancer killer of both women and men, this number represents an 8% increase from the 2020 Barometer. This data is being released during November for Lung Cancer Awareness Month; however, the Lung Association works to defeat this deadly disease year-round."

The 2021 Lung Health Barometer surveyed 4,000 Americans nationwide about lung health and lung cancer. Some key findings show that:

  • 29% of Americans know that lung cancer is the leading cancer killer of women and men, which is an 8% increase from the 2020 Lung Health Barometer.
  • Although lung cancer is the leading cancer killer of women and men, only 10% of adults understand that lung cancer is among the most likely cancers to affect women while 35% know that it was among those likely to affect men.
  • Only 36% of respondents know that lung cancer screening is now available for early detection of the disease.

See more Lung Health Barometer survey results here.

"More people are surviving lung cancer than ever before, but despite this progress, this survey indicates there's more work to be done to raise awareness and understanding of lung cancer," said Wimmer. "Greater awareness of lung cancer is key to marshaling research funding, encouraging lung cancer screening, and reducing stigma around this disease."

This is the sixth year of the Lung Health Barometer, which is conducted by the Lung Association's LUNG FORCE initiative. LUNG FORCE unites the nation to stand together for lung health and against lung cancer.

Throughout Lung Cancer Awareness Month, the Lung Association will be sharing new resources, the State of Lung Cancer Report (November 16), inspiring patient stories and lifesaving lung cancer screening information. Through the Lung Association's Lung Cancer Patient Meetup on the Go program, the organization is offering several webinars and plans to share recordings of the webinars in November. Learn more at

For media interested in scheduling an interview with a lung cancer expert, contact Jill Dale at 312-940-7001 or

About the American Lung Association
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit:

LUNG FORCE is a national movement led by the American Lung Association to unite our nation in our efforts to defeat lung cancer, the #1 cancer killer of women and men. LUNG FORCE has three priorities: 1) Make lung cancer a cause that people care about – and act on; 2) Educate and empower patients and healthcare providers and 3) Raise critical funds for groundbreaking lung cancer research. The American Lung Association's LUNG FORCE is nationally presented by CVS Health. Find out more at

American Lung Association • 55 W. Wacker Drive, Suite 1150 • Chicago, IL 60601
1331 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Ste. 1425 North • Washington, D.C. 20004
1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872)

CONTACT: Jill Dale  |  American Lung Association
P: 312-940-7001 M: 720-438-8289E:

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SOURCE American Lung Association

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