Cancer Registry Management
Overview of the Profession
Quality Cancer Data Management
A Cancer Registry is an information system designed for the collection, management, and analysis of data on persons with the diagnosis of a malignant or neoplastic disease. Cancer Registries can be classified into three general areas:
- Healthcare institution registries maintain data on all patients diagnosed and/or treated for cancer at their facility. Healthcare facilities report cancer cases to the central or State Cancer Registry as required by law.
- Central Registries are population-based registries that maintain data on all cancer patients within certain geographic areas.
- Special purpose registries maintain data on a particular type of cancer.
Maintaining a Cancer Registry ensures that health officials have accurate and timely information, while ensuring the availability of data for treatment, research and educational purposes. Local, state and national cancer registries use registry data in defined areas to make important public health decisions that maximize the effectiveness of limited public health funds, evaluate patient outcomes and quality of life, calculate survival rates, and report cancer incidence.
Cancer Registries maintain a wide range of demographic and medical information such as:
- Age, gender, race/ethnicity, birthplace and residence
- Diagnostic findings including types, dates and results of procedures used to diagnose cancer and the extent of disease
- Type of therapies: surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, hormone or immunotherapy
- Follow-up about treatment, recurrence and patient status
The Certification Examination for Cancer Registrars is sponsored and offered solely by the National Cancer Registrars Association (NCRA) Council on Certification.