Targeted Lung Health Checks (TLHC) is essentially an ‘MOT for your lungs’ to see if they are in good working order and to diagnose conditions early. Your lungs work hard for you every minute of your life. As you get older it’s worth getting them checked out. If you’re aged between 55 and 74 and have ever smoked, you may be offered an NHS Targeted Lung Health Check.
There are often no signs or symptoms of lung cancer at an early stage. As a result, sadly, 7 out of 10 cancer patients are diagnosed too late to be cured. Targeted lung health checks can help diagnose lung cancer early, at a stage where treatment can be more successful
If you are worried about a symptom of lung cancer, please do not wait until you are invited for a Lung Health Check. Contact your GP as soon as possible. Find out more information on lung cancer symptoms by clicking here.
What happens at a targeted lung health check?
The lung health checks are made up of two stages: first, a telephone call with a health care professional who will ask you about your smoking history, lifestyle and current health and well-being.
If, based on that information, you are deemed to be at a high risk of lung cancer, you may be offered a CT scan so that we can get a better picture of inside your lungs.
If that scan shows that you need further investigations we will refer you to your local hospital.
If the scan shows no issues that need further investigation you will be invited back in two years for another CT scan to check that your lungs are still healthy.
How will I be invited for a lung health check?
You will be sent a letter with a time and date for your appointment.
In Lancashire and South Cumbria, checks are currently being offered in the following areas:
In Blackpool, the first checks were offered in 2021 and patients who received a scan at their first lung health check are now being invited back for their two-year follow-up scans.
In 2023, the Government announced that targeted lung health checks would become a national screening programme, which would roll out to cover the whole of the country over the next few years.