Overview

Working in conjunction with our colleagues in the Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Thoracic Surgery, and Smoking Cessation, we created the first university-based multidisciplinary Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Program using low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) technology in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

The Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Program at VCU Health was Virginia’s first American College of Radiology-Designated multidisciplinary lung cancer screening center and is also recognized by the Go2 Foundation for Lung Cancer as a Screening Center of Excellence in Central Virginia. The Center continues to serve as a model for other academic screening programs across the country.

Our fellowship trained thoracic radiologists are dedicated to providing high quality, low-dose lung cancer screening care and patient safety daily on the VCU Health main campus in downtown Richmond as well as at all of its out-patient locations including Gateway, Short Pump, New Kent, Stony Point, and (opening July 2021) Tappahannock.

As part of an academic and research-backed medical institution our lung cancer screening specialists, under the direction of Mark S. Parker, M.D., FACR, serve as educators and leading authors of medical publications and textbooks.

The National Lung Screening Trial

The National Cancer Institute sponsored a National Lung Screening Trial in 2011, which was conducted through the American College of Radiology Imaging Network. The trial showed that high risk individuals who received baseline and subsequent annual low-dose computed tomography scans had a 20% lower risk of death from lung cancer than individuals who received annual chest radiography alone, and a 7% reduction in all-cause mortality.

NELSON Trial

The 2018 NELSON trial has shown up to a 61% reduction in mortality in high-risk women. The trial also showed a 39% mortality reduction in high-risk men undergoing screening with low-dose computed tomography. 

Patient-centric Early Detection

Our Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Program is endorsed by Go2 Foundation as a screening center of excellence. In 2016, our program created the first Patient-centric Model for shared decision making, low-dose computed tomography screening, consultation and smoking cessation in Virginia. This particular screening program also serves as a critical point of entry for new as well as existing VCU patients to be evaluated by one or more clinical disciplines. 

United States Preventive Services Task Force Recommendations

Current Eligibility Versus Proposed Eligibility

Current Eligibility Requirements (Based on 2013 USPSTF Recommendations)

  • Are you between 55-80 years of age, AND 
  • Do you have at least a 30-pack year history of smoking  
  • Are you currently smoking or have you quit smoking within the past 15-years  

New Proposed Requirements (Based on 2021 USPSTF Recommendations)

  • Are you between 50-80 years of age, AND 
  • Do you have at least a 20-pack year history of smoking  
  • Are you currently smoking or have you quit smoking within the past 15-years  

The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) relied on scientific evidence to develop the new recommendations. The USPSTF reviewed several randomized control trials and cohort studies that reported on the sensitivity, specificity, or predictive value of low-dose CT (LDCT), using the eventual diagnosis of lung cancer as the reference standard. These included the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) which showed a 20% reduction in lung cancer mortality (2011) and more recently the NELSON (Nederlands-Leuvens Longkanker Screenings ONderzoek) Trial which showed a 61% reduction in mortality in high-risk women and a 26% mortality reduction in high-risk men (2018) as well as Modeling studies from the Cancer Intervention and Surveillance Modeling Network (CISNET).

Under the Affordable Care Act, private insurers and Medicaid Expansion plans must comply with the new USPSTF recommendations within one year of the recommendations release date (March 2022). Some insurance plans may voluntarily cover the screening costs, but they are not required to do so. The American College of Radiology (ACR) in conjunction with many other advocacy groups is working on a plan to reach out to the largest private insurance payors to help facilitate this process before March 2022. 

Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Program

The Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Program has detected unsuspected coronary disease resulting in cardiac referrals and surgeries; unsuspected lung diseases besides lung cancer resulting in need for referral and treatment by pulmonary medicine, thyroid lesions requiring treatment by an endocrinologist, and renal lesions in need of treatment by an urologist.

Lung Cancer Screening Program Director

Mark S. Parker, M.D., FACR

Mark S. Parker, M.D., FACR

Professor

Mark S. Parker, M.D., FACR

Mark S. Parker, M.D., FACR

Professor

Radiology

Professor of Diagnostic Radiology and Internal Medicine
Co-Section Chief, Cardiothoracic Imaging
Director, Thoracic Imaging Fellowship
Director, Lung Cancer Screening Program

Phone: (804) 828-5064

Fax: (804) 628-1132

Email: mark.parker@vcuhealth.org

Address/Location:
West Hospital, West Wing

Read More

Mark S. Parker, M.D., FACR received his medical school and diagnostic radiology training at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia and his fellowship training in thoracic disease at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee. He has been practicing in thoracic imaging for 25 years and joined the faculty of the VCU Department of Radiology in 2001.

Dr. Parker currently holds the academic rank of Professor of Diagnostic Radiology and Internal Medicine at the VCU School of Medicine and has multiple appointments at VCU Health including, Director of Thoracic Imaging, Director of the Thoracic Imaging Fellowship Program, and Director of the Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Program. He has received numerous research and faculty awards, and he is continually recognized by peers and patients for his exceptional care in America’s Top Radiologists by the Consumers’ Research Council of America, Best Doctors' in America, Virginia’s Living Magazine, and Richmond’s Top Docs.

Dr. Parker was instrumental in developing and launching the multi-disciplinary lung cancer screening program at VCU Health. The program, which was recognized as a center of excellence by the Go2 Foundation, was Virginia’s first American College of Radiology designated lung cancer screening center. The program continues to serve as a model for other lung cancer screening programs located throughout the country.

Dr. Parker is a frequent lecturer on key topics, including lung cancer and other neoplasms affecting the lungs, pleura, and mediastinum. Recently, he lectured on the merits of early detection lung cancer screening before the World Cancer Conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Rome, Italy. He was also a keynote speaker at the 2019 International Cancer Conference in London, England. Dr. Parker has published extensively in the areas of thoracic imaging and lung cancer screening, and is an invited reviewer for over six radiology journals. He has contributed to nearly 100 abstracts, proceedings and peer-reviewed journals, and is the lead author of two textbooks on thoracic imaging and one textbook on lung cancer screening.

Dr. Parker served as a technical expert and key informant on the Imaging Guidelines for the Pretreatment Staging of Small Cell Lung Cancer for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's Evidence-based Practice Center Systematic Review Protocol Project. He was also inducted as a Fellow in the American College of Radiology, and he was recently named Chair of the Scientific Abstract Subcommittee for the American Roentgen Ray Society. He currently serves on the Practice Quality Improvement Program for the American Roentgen Ray Society. Dr. Parker is also an exam item writer for the American College of Radiology and a diplomat of the American Board of Radiology.

Foundation for Lung Cancer Logo

Proud to be a GO2 Foundation for Lung Cancer Screening Center of Excellence (SCOE). The designation ensures that low dose CT screening for lung cancer is carried out safely, efficiently and equitably.

Lung Cancer Screening in Central Virginia

Lung Cancer Screening Locations

Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Clinic

VCU Health Stony Point

9000 Stony Point Parkway, Richmond, VA 23235

 

VCU Medical Center - MCV Campus

1200 East Marshall Street, Richmond, VA 23219

 

VCU Medical Center Gateway Building

1200 East Marshall Street, Richmond, VA 23219

 

VCU Health Short Pump Pavilion

11958 W Broad Street, Henrico, VA 23233

 

Emergency Center at New Kent

2495 Pocahontas Trail, Quinton, VA 23141

Contact Us to Learn More

Patients and referring physicians, please visit our Lung Screening Program at VCU Health for more information or contact:

Michelle Futrell, M.S.N., M.B.A., R.N.
Lung Cancer Screening Nurse Navigator and Program Coordinator
804-828-3768