New Report Reveals Rhode Island Leads Nation in Five Year Survival and Overall Treatment Rates for Lung Cancer

American Lung Association examines toll of lung cancer in Rhode Island, underscores urgent need for more high-risk people to be screened to increase survivorship

The 2023 “State of Lung Cancer” report reveals that Rhode Island ranks #1 in the nation for 5 year survival and treatment rates for lung cancer. This means that Rhode Island is among the best states in the nation for those at risk for or living with lung cancer. The American Lung Association’s 6th annual report, released today, highlights the toll of lung cancer in Rhode Island and around the country, and examines key indicators including new cases, survival, early diagnosis, surgical treatment, lack of treatment and screening rates.

In Rhode Island, data showed that the number of new lung cancer cases declined, while the rate of early detection and 5-year survival rates increased.  Nationally, the “State of Lung Cancer” report found that lung cancer survival rates are improving for everyone, including people of color. In fact, the five-year lung cancer survival rate for people of color has increased by 17% in the last two years, helping close the health disparity gap.

“Thankfully, in Rhode Island, the lung cancer survival rate has improved because of increased awareness, improved access to healthcare and cutting-edge research into new treatments for the disease,” said Daniel Fitzgerald, director of advocacy at the American Lung Association. “However, lung cancer is still the leading cause of cancer deaths here in the Ocean State and across the nation, and our recent report makes it clear that we have more work to do to reduce the burden of lung cancer and increase screening rates for those at risk.” 

The report found that Rhode Island.] ranked:
•    1 in the nation for survival at 33.3%. The national rate of people alive five years after a lung cancer diagnosis is 26.6%.
•    1 in the nation for lack of treatment at 13.2%. Nationally, 20.6% of cases receive no treatment.
•    3 in the nation for early diagnosis at 31.9%. Nationally, only 26.6% of cases are diagnosed at an early stage when the survival rate is much higher.
•    3 in the nation for surgery at 26.9%. Lung cancer can often be treated with surgery if it is diagnosed at an early stage and has not spread. Nationally, 20.8% of cases underwent surgery.
•    6 in the nation for lung cancer screening at 9.1%. Lung cancer screening with annual low-dose CT scans for those at high risk can reduce the lung cancer death rate by up to 20%. Nationally, only 4.5% of those at high risk were screened.
•    41 in the nation for rate of new lung cancer cases at 64.4 per 100,000. The national rate is 54.6 per 100,000.

The 2023 “State of Lung Cancer” report highlights that Rhode Island must do more to reduce the burden of lung cancer and encourages everyone to help end lung cancer. Join the Lung Association’s efforts by asking your member of Congress to co-sponsor H.R. 4286, the Increasing Access to Lung Cancer Screening Act at

Get involved and help the mission of the American Lung Association. The Fight for Air Climb Providence is coming up on April 27, 2024 and registration is now open. Learn more at  

NC Community Connections: All About Asthma
, | May 22, 2024
Freedom From Smoking Clinic
, | May 29, 2024