More than a quarter of people in Ireland believe that non-smokers who have lung cancer should have priority over the treatment of smokers by research.
Findings, which mark the beginning of the International Month of Lung Cancer awareness, come as the wife of a man who died of lung cancer, says that society should be less crucial for those who have a disease.
A survey of 1,017 adults conducted in the name of "I am lung cancer Marie Keating" showed that 27% of the public believe that non-smokers who have lung cancer should have priority treatment for those who smoke.
It also found that 17% think that health insurers should not cover patients with lung carcinoma who smoke, and 34% of adults agree that patients with lung cancer are confronted with a public stigma that other cancer patients are not confronted.
One in ten said they considered it acceptable.
Transmitter Venetia Kuick lost her husband Martina for lung cancer early this year.
Launched by the Marie Keating Foundation campaign, Ms. Kuick spoke about how she felt the stigma and judgment.
"When someone is diagnosed with cancer, it's a tragedy, regardless of cancer. We all deal with different ways of life." Cancer is not one of them.
"When you are concerned and worried about someone you love about lung cancer, it's hard to hear those words of guilt and judgment. We need to be less crucial when someone gets lung cancer.
No one chooses cancer, and everyone can get it. "
Liz Ieates, director of the Marie Keating Foundation, says that more people die of lung cancer each year than any other type of cancer.
"Many people have an image they believe is a lung cancer patient, but this campaign illustrates the diversity of people it can affect. We want to change the conversation and tone of lung cancer from one of the verdicts to one of empathy and support."
The study found that 16% of respondents said they were well informed about the signs and symptoms of lung cancer compared to 31% who said they were well informed about breast cancer and 26% in relation to skin cancer.