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

Have You Submitted Your Data to NCDB Yet?

Dear Registry Staff:

The annual NCDB Call for Data is in full swing.  As of noon January 7, over 100 programs had submitted files.  Here are some pointers to guide your submission (or to review what you already submitted): 

  • Sometimes people refer to this year’s Call for Data as the “2012” Call for Data because 2012 is the most recent diagnosis year collected.  Please be aware that not only are all 2012 diagnoses for analytic cases to be submitted, but also all analytic cases diagnosed on or after your program’s Reference Date that were updated beginning December 1, 2012.  Registry software should select the correct cases for you.  To confirm that you successfully submitted all required cases, revisit “Determining Submission Completeness” in the June 2013 CoC Source.
  • New programs that submitted only 2011 diagnoses in 2013 also should submit the full analytic diagnosis year’s cases for each year beginning with their Reference Date to assure that NCDB has all analytic cases for diagnosis years prior to 2011.  Using your software provider’s canned selection for 2014 submission will not pull all of these cases.  Ask your software provider how to select full diagnosis years’ cases for submission to NCDB.
  • Make sure you use the correct edits for this Call for Data to pre-edit.  See for editing information.  If you have edits to clean and do not immediately see the problem, consult the applicable edit descriptions linked from the web page you used to download your metafile and configuration files.  If you are having problems setting up or running GenEDITS Plus, see the instructions at
  • Read the submission link on Datalinks carefully; you want to submit NCDB Call for Data files to NCDB, not to RQRS.  For suggestions for avoiding other common problems, see the December 2013 CoC Source.
  • The earlier in January that you submit your NCDB data, the sooner you will see the results.  The deadline for submission is midnight the night of January 31, Central time.  See the full requirements for the Call for Data at
  • Extensions for the Standard 5.5 submission deadline are available for unusual situations.  Please e-mail Jerri Linn Phillips before the submission deadline to request an extension.  Explain the nature of the problem and how it is being addressed.  If an extension is granted and used, commendation for Standard 5.6 is not available.  Extensions are not granted for lack of adequate staffing, and they rarely exceed two weeks.
  • Read all automated NCDB submission notifications, and retain them through the survey that evaluates the respective submissions.   Submissions made in 2014 will be subject to surveys beginning in 2015.  Check notifications for the following:
    • Did the notification come from NCDB, not RQRS? 
    • Did you submit all of the necessary files?
    • Are all required diagnosis years accounted for, with the expected numbers of cases?
    • Did you submit the same file twice when you intended to submit two different files? (check for unexpected duplication of diagnosis years with the same number of cases)
    • Do you have edit errors or rejected cases to fix?  Corrections are due April 1, but immediate correction is recommended.  “Data quality errors” for cases diagnosed in 2003 or later must be corrected.  Rejected records from any diagnosis year must be corrected if they did not result from submission of a non-reportable case.

For help with your NCDB submission, e-mail NCDB. Consider bookmarking for links to all NCDB submission information.

Jerri Linn Philips for the National Cancer Data Base Staff