National Audit of Breast Cancer in Older Patients (NABCOP)

Supplier info

Name: Jibby Medina
Org: Royal College of Surgeons (RCS)
Phone: 0207 869 6600
Website: NABCOP

HQIP contact

Sarah Walker

Programme overview

About 45,000 new cases of breast cancer are diagnosed each year in England and Wales. Although clinical guidelines emphasize that treatment decisions are based on clinical need and fitness rather than age, there is evidence that NHS services have different approaches to breast cancer management for older patients. The National Audit of Breast Cancer in Older Patients (NABCOP) will assess the processes of care and outcomes for women aged over 70 years. NABCOP’s results will help NHS breast cancer services in England and Wales to benchmark and improve the care delivered to these women.

NABCOP is a new project that began in April 2016. It is run by the Association of Breast Surgery and the Clinical Effectiveness Unit at the Royal College of Surgeons of England. The clinical audit will focus on the patient pathway from diagnosis to the end of primary therapy, for women diagnosed with breast cancer from 2014 onwards.

In the first year, NABCOP has conducted an organisational audit and define a set of process and outcome indicators. NABCOP will only use patient-level data that have been collected by the cancer registration services in England and Wales. NHS hospital trusts and health boards will be contacted by the NABCOP team during October 2016 with instructions for participation. The first report from NABCOP will be published in spring 2017 and yearly thereafter.

Additional information on all HQIP-commissioned projects is available on the NHS Trusts page, which includes the recommendations repository, infographics compendium, 9 month publication schedule, impact report, and National Clinical Audit and Enquiries Directory. For further information about this project, please contact the project team directly using the contact details listed in the ‘Supplier Info’ section above.

Clinical Outcomes Publication (COP)

Clinical outcomes publications provide quality measures at individual consultant, team and unit levels using national clinical audit and administrative data. This project is one of a number of National Clinical Audits who publish these types of data on their website for patients and the public to view; see the project website link above. For an overview, see HQIP’s clinical outcomes publication webpages.

Update on future plans from 2022

NHS England and Welsh Government intend to commission a new National Cancer Audit Collaborating Centre (see Tenders and procurement) to support an expansion in national cancer audit topics.

NHS England and Welsh Government have committed to assuring and improving the quality and outcomes of breast cancer care in patients of all ages, in line with the Long Term Plan (for England) and the Quality Statement for Cancer (for Wales).  Meeting these commitments for breast cancer includes sustaining an audit of primary breast cancer alongside developing a new audit of metastatic disease (also known as secondary breast cancer).

Building on the success and learning over the last five years from National Audit of Breast Cancer in Older People (NABCOP), a single integrated audit programme covering audits of both primary breast cancer and metastatic breast cancer in women and men of all ages will be commissioned. It will form part of the delivery requirements for the new Collaborating Centre.

There are a number of reasons to bring together these two audits within one integrated programme. These include the importance of designing each audit’s improvement goals, measures, data reports and audience communications to work efficiently and effectively together.

HQIP and the Royal College of Surgeons will work together during 2022 to enable an effective transition from the NABCOP to the future national breast cancer audit programme.

Accessing data

Data collected on behalf of HQIP by all NCAPOP projects is routinely reported and these reports are available in the ‘Latest resources’ section. The reported data is also placed on the website.

For details of how to apply for data that is not in the public domain, please see HQIP’s data access webpages.

Details of the contracts that HQIP awards are available at:

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