National Cancer Waiting Times Monitoring Data Set Overview

Introduction

The Cancer Reform Strategy (2007) introduced new and changed commitments in terms of service standards for cancer PATIENTS that must be met. A Review of Cancer Waiting Times Standards was carried out by the Department of Health and published alongside Improving Outcomes: A Strategy for Cancer (2011).  Following this review it was confirmed in Improving Outcomes: A Strategy for Cancer that:

“overall, cancer waiting time standards should be retained. Shorter waiting times can help to ease patient anxiety and, at best, can lead to earlier diagnosis, quicker treatment, a lower risk of complications, an enhanced patient experience and improved cancer outcomes. The current cancer waiting times standards will therefore be retained.”

This updated version of the National Cancer Waiting Times Monitoring Data Set therefore supports the continued management and monitoring of the following waiting times:

Information Standards Notice ISB 0147 Amd 23/2011 revised the National Cancer Waiting Times Monitoring Data Set published in Data Set Change Notice 20/2008, which previously expanded upon and superseded Data Set Change Notice 22/2002, the original data set used by the Cancer Waiting Times Database for central data capture to support performance management and commissioning of cancer services.

Treatment Scenarios

The treatment scenarios listed on the National Cancer Waiting Times Monitoring Data Set (scenarios two to seven) are to be used to manage the collection of data for all PATIENTS with cancer. Cancer for the purpose of this data collection exercise is defined using the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) codes. Data must be collected and transmitted as specified for all PATIENTS with a PRIMARY DIAGNOSIS within the range C00 to C97 or D05, or a secondary or metastatic disease linked to the original PRIMARY DIAGNOSIS (ICD) within this range (excluding categories relating to non-melanoma skin cancer). A full list of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) diagnosis codes the Cancer Waiting Times Database will accept is available at: Cancer Waiting Times - Useful Documentation and Links.

Data Set Notation:

Reporting

Cancer Waiting Times Database

The existing Cancer Waiting Times Database has been upgraded to support the collection of data outlined in Information Standards Notice ISB 0147 Amd 23/2011. The revision to the National Cancer Waiting Times Monitoring Data Set outlined in Information Standards Notice ISB 0147 Amd 23/2011 increases the level of granularity and transparency around patient choice delays and improve the reporting of cancer treatment.

Patient level information

How the data set is transmitted

Information can be entered either manually through the Cancer Waiting Times Record screen or via the upload function. The specification for the upload file is detailed in the 'National Cancer Waiting Times User Manual' available at: Cancer Waiting Times - Useful Documentation and Links.

The upload function will retain the current CSV functionality, however the current NHS standard for the transmission of data sets is XML. The ability to transmit the data to the Cancer Waiting Times Database in XML format will be introduced from Autumn 2012 with the current CSV upload function being discontinued from Autumn 2013 by Information Standards Notice ISB 0147 Amd 6/2012.

Security and Confidentiality

Security and confidentiality information to accompany the collection of this information is available at: Cancer Waiting Times - Useful Documentation and Links.

Further guidance

Further guidance has been produced by the Department of Health and is available at: Cancer Waiting Times - Useful Documentation and Links.

Any additional queries regarding the National Cancer Waiting Times Monitoring Data Set should be addressed to CANCER-WAITS@dh.gsi.gov.uk.