Your Impact

Pivotal research by Cancer Council researchers leads to a new national screening program for lung cancer!

For the past decade, Cancer Council researchers (now part of the Daffodil Centre*) have led and partnered on pivotal research into the feasibility of a lung cancer screening program across Australia.

Our research reached a breakthrough in May 2023 when Mark Butler, the Australian Minister for Health and Aged Care, announced $263 million for a new national screening program for lung cancer, which is expected to be phased in from July 2025.

This research was made possible thanks to the generous support of Chargers like you and your friends, family, and colleagues.

Your support will make a huge difference to the lives of those impacted by cancer like Belinda and her family. Belinda is Charging for the sixth time in 2024 in honour of both her parents who died from lung cancer and her eldest brother who died from throat cancer.

Belinda shared “this is so close to my heart - watching my family members lose their battle to cancer, I Charge for THEM each year. And watching all those that work selflessly to help patients and families, I hope that by contributing I am helping to find cures for cancer.”

The Background

Lung cancer begins when abnormal cells grow and multiply in an uncontrolled way in the lungs. Cancer that starts in the lungs is called primary lung cancer. It can spread throughout the lungs, and to the lymph nodes, pleura, brain, adrenal glands, liver and bones.

 Last year, an estimated 14,800 Aussies were diagnosed with lung cancer

Lung cancer is the fifth most common cancer and the leading cause of cancer death in Australia.

Every day, about 24 Australians die from lung cancer – about 1 every hour.

The Research

Thanks to your support, the work of The Daffodil Centre* researchers like A/Professor Marianne Weber, directly influenced the Australian Government’s decision to introduce a new national screening program for lung cancer.  

The Daffodil Centre’s independent research provided evidence to Australian government bodies that lung cancer screening would indeed be feasible and cost-effective in Australia. It was a key factor for the government’s independent Medical Services Advisory Committee’s recommendation for the introduction of a screening program, following a deferred decision which sought additional evidence. 

The new program has the potential to detect lung cancers earlier in people at high risk, when 5-year survival is as high as 70%. The program is expected to target people who are most at risk of lung cancer – those aged 50 to 70 with a history of heavy smoking. 

This will help more Australians survive lung cancer, which causes the most cancer related deaths in Australia.

This is a timely addition to Australia’s national screening programs, with the potential to save 4,000 lives in the first six years of the program." 

A/Professor Marianne Weber is also a fellow Charger and is Charging for the 7th time this year! Thanks for joining us in telling cancer where to go, both in and out of the lab Marianne!  

*The Daffodil Centre is a joint venture between Cancer Council NSW and The University of Sydney.  

Learn more

If you or a loved one are affected by cancer at this time, you can call us on 13 11 20 for confidential information and support from one of our friendly healthcare professionals. Or visit our Online Community, a safe and supportive online discussion site.