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


Looking for information about the Cancer Surgery Standards Program (CSSP)? Use the resources below to learn more about the program and how the CSSP aims to improve the quality of surgical care provided to cancer patients.

Operative Standards for Cancer Surgery: Standards 5.3–5.8

Introductory Video

This brief, 6-minute video introduces the Operative Standards and the rationale for their incorporation into the Commission on Cancer (CoC) accreditation standards. We recommend that all Cancer Liaison Physicians (CLPs) and State Chairs distribute this video to surgeons at their CoC-accredited cancer programs and encourage program staff to show the video during tumor boards. 

Watch the introductory video

Visual Abstracts

The CSSP has developed visual abstracts to summarize the requirements of the CoC Operative Standards at a glance. We encourage CoC-accredited facilities to share these infographics with surgeons, pathologists, and registrars at their institutions to help increase awareness and understanding of these accreditation standards. Please refer to the full standard for detailed requirements.

CoC Standard 5.7 (Total Mesorectal Excision)

CoC Standard 5.8 (Pulmonary Resection)

SurgOnc Today® Podcasts

In collaboration with the CSSP, the Society of Surgical Oncology has developed a series of podcasts on the CoC Operative Standards. Tune in to learn more about the standards, what they are, and why they are so important.

ACS Operative Standards for Cancer Surgery: Why We Need Them and How to Put Them Into Practice

CoC Standard 5.7: Introducing the New Commission on Cancer Rectal Cancer Surgical Standard

CoC Standard 5.8: Best Practices to Meet the Standard for Nodal Assessment During a Curative Operation for Lung Cancer

Educational Webinars on the CoC Operative Standards

To support CoC-accredited programs in achieving compliance with Standards 5.3 through 5.8, the CSSP has hosted several educational webinars providing information and answering questions on the CoC Operative Standards. All staff at CoC programs, including administrators, pathologists, registrars, and surgeons are encouraged to watch these recordings and review the slides and summaries.

Implementation Strategies for Synoptic Operative Reporting Webinar | Slides

CoC Standard 5.7 (Total Mesorectal Excision) Webinar | Slides | Summary & FAQ

CoC Standard 5.8 (Pulmonary Resection) Webinar | Slides | Summary & FAQ

Bulletin Article

Published in the January 2021 issue of Bulletin of the American College of Surgeons, this article provides an overview of the requirements for compliance with CoC Standards 5.3 through 5.8 and an update on the resources and education available for CoC-accredited programs.

Read "2020 CoC operative standards: Where are we now?"

Webinar Opportunity

As part of the Meeting the 2020 Standards for Optimal Cancer Care series, this webinar led by Matthew H.G. Katz, MD, FACS, CSSP Chair, gives an overview of the six operative standards in the 2020 CoC Standards and identifies how these standards for performing cancer surgery and synoptic operative reports improve care. Originally presented live on July 8, 2020, the webinar is now available to watch online and offers a maximum of 0.75 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™.

Enroll in and watch the webinar

Program Launch

The American College of Surgeons Cancer Programs launched the CSSP on July 20, 2020. Read the press release and watch the video interview between ACS Executive Director, David B. Hoyt, MD, FACS, and ACS Cancer Programs Medical Director, Heidi Nelson, MD, FACS.

As a part of the launch of the CSSP, a new program of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) dedicated to improving the quality of care for cancer surgery patients, the CSSP Program Launch Webcast was held on Wednesday, July 22. This webcast provided an overview of the CSSP, a panel discussion with Cancer Programs constituents on the value of the CSSP, and a brief overview of the synoptic operative report template for colon cancer that has been developed through the CSSP as a tool for Commission on Cancer (CoC)-accredited programs.

Watch the webcast launch


Craig Messick, MD, FACS


Diana Dickson-Witmer, MD, FACS
Sara Holton, CTR
Matthew H.G. Katz, MD, FACS
Magesh Sundaram, MD, FACS

Read about the background, origins, and goals of the CSSP in this review article, "Announcing the new Cancer Surgery Standards Program," in the Bulletin of the American College of Surgeons.

Program Information

One-Page Overview

Frequently Asked Questions