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National Bowel Cancer Audit

The National Bowel Cancer Audit is a high-profile, collaborative, national clinical audit for bowel cancer, including colon and rectal cancer.


The Royal College of Surgeons has been awarded the contract to deliver the audit until March 2018.  The HSCIC will continue to work in partnership, with the Clinical Effectiveness Unit (RCS) providing the day to day management of the audit and the data collection services. 

The 2015 annual report is scheduled to be published in December 2015.

The revised data submission deadline for the National Bowel Cancer Audit 2016 Annual Report and the 2016 Consultant Outcomes Publication is 11 December 2015. Please note patients added after 11 December will not be linked to HES/ONS and will therefore be excluded from the Consultant Outcomes Publication and some of the outcomes in the 2016 Annual Report

Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers in the UK after breast and lung cancer, with approximately 40,000 new cases registered each year. Occurrence of colorectal cancer is strongly related to age, with almost three quarters of cases occurring in people aged 65 or over. Colorectal cancer is the second most common cause of cancer death in the UK.

The audit aims to improve the quality of care and survival of patients with bowel cancer, and meets the requirements as set out in the NHS cancer plan, NICE guidelines and the report of the Bristol Royal Infirmary inquiry.

We want to help make sure that people with bowel cancer receive the best care possible. The more we know about the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care of this disease and the outcomes, the more can be done to improve things. The National Bowel Cancer Audit is designed to provide this vital information. 

What does it measure?

Information in the audit includes:

  • audit participation by NHS Trust and data completeness for key fields
  • measures about the process of care given to patients
  • information about care outcomes and treatment

How is the data collected?

The audit includes all NHS Trusts in England and Health Boards in Wales.

All participating trusts submit their data via the Clinical Audit Platform (CAP). The Welsh data is submitted directly from the Cancer Network Information System Cymru (CANISC) to the Clinical Audit Platform. Details on how to access this data collection system, as well as the registration form can be found under User Documents. 

Who manages the audit?

The audit is commissioned by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership (HQIP) as part of the National Clinical Audit and Patient Outcomes Programme (NCAPOP), and delivered jointly by the Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) Clinical Effectiveness Unit, the Health and Social Care Information Centre and the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland (ACPGBI).

The Health and Social Care Information Centre provides project management and technical infrastructure, while the ACPGBI provides clinical leadership and direction.

How to participate

All patients with a diagnosis of bowel cancer admitted for the first time to a NHS Trust in England or Health Board in Wales are eligible for inclusion in the audit.

In order to allow trusts to plan for the submission of data for the 2016 Annual Report, the National Bowel Cancer Audit wish to advise that these will be the dates for data submission (patients diagnosed between 1 April 2014 and 31 March 2015):

5th October 2015First submission deadline for 2016 AR and 2016 COP
19th October 2015Audit team will feedback on data extracted on 5th October
2nd November 2015Second data submission deadline and final deadline for patients data to be linked the HES and death data (any new patient submitted after this date will not be included in the COP)
11th December 2015Extended data submission deadline and final deadline for patients data to be linked the HES and death data
15th February 2016Final data submission deadline.  Any new patient added at this stage will not be linked to HES and death data and will not be included in COP.

The final submission deadline for the 2016 Annual Report is 15th February 2016.  The report is scheduled to be published in the autumn of 2016.

Trusts who submit data to the Audit data collection system using the Somerset Cancer Registry (SCR) can visit the SCR website to view their fully updated SCR mapping documentation.  The documentation shows how codes entered into local Somerset systems map to codes with the Audit dataset as part of data upload process.

Publication of the audit results

The 2014 Annual Report was published 15 December 2014. This covers patients diagnosed between 1 April 2012 and 31 March 2013.

The 2015 Annual Report is scheduled to be published in December 2015

Clinical Audit Documentation

You hereby agree that in downloading or using the documents or tools on this web page for any use outside of the project for which it was developed, you are entering into a royalty free, non-exclusive, licence agreement with the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership under the following Terms and Conditions:
All information, software, products and related graphics contained in the audit tool or data collection form are provided for non commercial purposes  "as is" without warranty, including but not limited to the implied warranties of satisfactory quality, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement of third party intellectual property rights. In no event shall HQIP be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special or consequential damages for loss of profits, revenue, data or use incurred by you or any third party, whether in action in contract, tort, or otherwise, arising from your access to, or use of, the audit tool or form. HQIP make no representations about the suitability, reliability, or timeliness, and accuracy of the information, software, products and related graphics contained in the audit tool or forms. HQIP reserves the right to make improvements, changes or updates to forms or tools at any time without notice.

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