Quality of Cancer Care

Quality of Cancer Care has been designated as one of the eight "challenge" areas in NCI's 2003 "Bypass Budget" (see The Nation's Investment in Cancer Research: Plans and Priorities). The purpose of this effort, substantially supported by the Applied Research Program, is to enhance the state of the science on the quality of cancer care and inform federal and private-sector decision making on care delivery, coverage, regulation, and standard setting. Work is underway to make cancer a working model for quality of care research and the translation of this research into practice. This requires addressing how data collection about cancer care can be standardized and made most useful to a variety of audiences-including providers, patients and their families, purchasers, payers, researchers, and policymakers.

To carry out this initiative, the Applied Research Program has spearheaded several key activities that include:

  • an interagency working committee (The Quality of Cancer Care Committee) that has launched collaborative projects directly involving NCI and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA);
  • a major public-private partnership, the National Quality Forum, to identify core measures of cancer care quality;
  • research on outcomes measurement by the Cancer Outcomes Measurement Working Group (COMWG) and the Cancer Care Outcomes Research and Surveillance Consortium (CanCORS), which is supporting the development and use of clinical and patient-centered outcomes measures for lung and colorectal cancer;
  • research on improving the quality of cancer communications (NCI Extraordinary Opportunities in Cancer Communications and the Health Communications and Informatics Research Branch provide additional information on this research). To this end, staff within the Applied Research Program co-organized with the Health Communications and Informatics Research Branch a two-day Consumer-Provider Communication Symposium in January, 2001; and
  • research to monitor patterns of treatment dissemination and quality of care through Patterns of Care/Quality of Care Studies, the Prostate Cancer Outcomes Study, and studies utilizing the SEER-Medicare Database.

To learn more about what the program is supporting in these areas of research, see:

Last modified:
01 Oct 2008
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