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US physicians’ group releases guidelines for “high value” cancer screening

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: (Published 19 May 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h2688
  1. Michael McCarthy
  1. 1Seattle

To promote the adoption of “high value” cancer screening practices the American College of Physicians (ACP) has published a set of screening guidelines for breast, cervical, ovarian, prostate, and colorectal cancer.

The guidelines, drawn up by the ACP’s High Value Care Task Force, define high value strategies as those that “provide a degree of benefits that clearly justifies the harms and costs incurred,” while those of low value are strategies that provide limited or no benefits to justify the potential harms and costs.1

“Considering screening through the lens of value could change discussions between clinicians and patients,” the task force said. “Rather than assuming that all screening is high value, clinicians might start a conversation with the understanding that it always involves trade-offs between benefits versus harms and costs and …

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