Definition of National Program of Cancer Registries

National Program of Cancer Registries: A program administered in the US by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) since 1994 that helps the states and US territories to improve their cancer registries; meet standards for data completeness; timeliness, and quality; use cancer data to support cancer prevention and control programs; train registry personnel; establish computerized reporting and data-processing systems; and develop laws and regulations that strengthen registry operations.

Before the National Program of Cancer Registries (NPCR) was established, 10 states in the US had no cancer registry and most states with registries lacked the resources and legislative support needed to gather complete data. With fiscal year 2002 funding of approximately $40 million, CDC's NPCR supported central registries and promoted the use of registry data in 45 states, the District of Columbia, and the territories of Puerto Rico, the Republic of Palau, and the Virgin Islands. CDC also developed special research projects such as studies to examine patterns of cancer care in specific populations. CDC's goal is for all states to maintain registries that provide high-quality data on cancer and cancer care.

NPCR complements NCI's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) registry program. Together, NPCR and the SEER program collect cancer data for the entire U.S. population. The SEER program gathers in-depth data on cancer cases diagnosed in Connecticut, Hawaii, Iowa, New Mexico, and Utah, as well as in six metropolitan areas and several rural/special population areas. The six metropolitan SEER registries and some of the rural/special population registries submit data to NPCR's state registries. In 2001, SEER began providing additional support to four NPCR-supported state registries (California, Kentucky, Louisiana, and New Jersey).


Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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