American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

Call for data

October 27, 2014

The Commission on Cancer (CoC) is committed to assisting accredited cancer programs with maintaining the highest level of data quality possible. We appreciate your facility's participation and contribution to the National Cancer Data Base (NCDB). Data submissions are essential for assessing and improving the quality of cancer patient care. The information generated from the NCDB enables cancer programs to compare treatment and outcomes with regional, state, and national patterns.

This year, the Annual NCDB Call for Data submissions are scheduled during January 2015 and corrections are due by April 1, 2015. A general overview is provided below. Please see for specific details. 

January 2015 will be the first time that all cancer cases diagnosed in 2013 are submitted to NCDB. All analytic cases diagnosed in 2013 must be submitted during January. In addition, cases changed by the hospital registrar since December 1, 2013, must be submitted for all analytic cases diagnosed between the cancer program's Reference Year (or 1985 if the Reference Year is earlier than 1985) and 2012, inclusive. Registry software will have built-in procedures to assist registrars with case selection. Registries are encouraged to submit their data early in January rather than waiting until the deadline if they are able, for smoother processing.

Compliance with CoC Standard 5.5 (Data Submission) applies to all cases collected by NCDB in 2015. Initial submission of all required cases is due by midnight the night of January 31, 2015, Central time. Cases from any diagnosis year that are "rejected" have technically not been submitted, and must be corrected and resubmitted by April 1, 2015, for compliance with Standard 5.5. Short extensions for the Standard 5.5 submission deadline will be given under highly unusual circumstances.

Standard 5.6 (Accuracy of Data) applies to all cases diagnosed in 2003 or later. For compliance with Standard 5.6, all edit errors for cases that were diagnosed in 2003 through 2013 must be corrected and case reports resubmitted by April 1, 2015. Programs are encouraged to submit any necessary corrections promptly. To be eligible for possible commendation, all cases diagnosed in 2003 through 2013 must be error-free at initial submission and submitted during January. No extensions are granted for Standard 5.6 deadlines. 

NCDB provides many mechanisms for programs to track their submissions. An automated notification acknowledging receipt of data submissions is e-mailed to the person who submitted the file, but does not report on its contents. Once a submission file is processed, a second notification is sent to the program's registrar identifying the number of cases submitted by diagnosis year, and whether there are any edit problems or rejected records that need to be corrected. Similar file-level information is available in DataLinks in the NCDB Data Transmission section and in the SAR under standards 5.5 and 5.6.

NCDB recommends that programs retain copies of all notifications related to data submission until after those submissions are surveyed, and routinely follow the web reports during the submission period to assure that all cases submitted are successfully received and processed.

Everything necessary to prepare for the NCDB Call for Data can be reached from If you or a member of your cancer program team has any questions regarding the NCDB Call for Data, please contact NCDB at


Lawrence N. Shulman, MD
Chair, CoC Quality Integration Committee