Improving Cancer Data and Cancer Care in Australia

Improving Cancer Data and Cancer Care in Australia

09 May 2013

Australians diagnosed with cancer will benefit from better collection and reporting of national cancer data under a new funding initiative announced today.

The clinical management and outcomes of many cancers depends on the stage of disease at diagnosis.

However, there is currently no national cancer data in this area, leaving gaps in our knowledge.

We must fill this gap if we are to continue to lead the world in cancer care.

The Gillard Government will provide Cancer Australia with $2.4 million over the next four years to collect, collate and report national data on:

  • The stage of the disease when cancer is diagnosed;
  • The treatments applied at each stage; and
  • How frequently cancer recurs after treatment.

An estimated 125,000 people will be diagnosed with cancer this year, with this figure expected to rise to 150,000 in 2020.

Improved cancer data will help to improve cancer care.

National collection and reporting of this data will fill a significant gap in our knowledge by identifying areas that may benefit from new approaches to the delivery of best practice cancer care.

It will also provide important insight into variations in survival outcomes by cancer type and of the cancer pathway after diagnosis.

Through this funding, Cancer Australia will also develop a framework to monitor and report on a set of indicators that will benchmark cancer control efforts in Australia, nationally and internationally.

Cancer Council Australia chief executive Professor Ian Olver AM said evidence was the key to effective cancer care.

"Cancer survival statistics help provide the big picture. But we need data sets on stage at diagnosis, recurrence and responsiveness to treatment to guide best practice," he said.

Cancer Australia is the Australian Governments national agency providing leadership in cancer control to improve outcomes for those affected by cancer, their families and carers.

This initiative will start on 1 July 2013.