Principles of Screening
yThe disease should be an important public health problem in
terms of its frequency and/or severity.
yThe natural history of the disease presents a window of
opportunity for early detection. For cancer this generally refers to
a detectable preclinical phase (DPCP)
yAn effective treatment should be available that favorably alters
the natural history of the disease. Usually for cancer this means a
reduction in cause-specific mortality.
yThe treatment should be more effective if initiated during the
presymptomatic (or earlier) stage than during the symptomatic
(or later) stage
yA suitable screening test should be available, that is, one that is
accurate, acceptable to the population, fairly easy to administer,
safe, and relatively inexpensive
yThere should be an appropriate screening strategy for the target