COSD Data Case Studies

Achieving high standards of COSD data completeness

The quality of the information produced for English NHS trusts by the National Audit of Breast Cancer in Older Patients (NABCOP) relies on complete data being submitted to the National Cancer Registration and Analysis Service (NCRAS), Public Health England.

The below boxes give some examples of the different approaches used by some NHS trusts to ensure their Cancer Outcomes and Services Dataset (COSD) submissions to NCRAS are as complete as possible.


Bedford Hospital NHS Trust (February 2019)

“Our COSD data is entered onto the Somerset Cancer Registry by our breast MDT Co-ordinator. The MDT discuss staging and performance status at MDT, and CNS contact is captured at MDT or is checked with the CNS’s after the meeting.

Our MDT co-ordinator also collects data from Breast screening referral documents that have been scanned and sent to us via her counterpart at Luton.

Our data collection is robust due to a heightened awareness of these requirements by the clinical team (who are extremely proactive) thanks to prompting by our MDT Co-ordinator, who is highly efficient. Data is validated each month prior to submission by the MDT co-ordinator.

The recently published NABCOP report was presented to the MDT by the Deputy Cancer Manager and the team were pleased with the results in comparison to the national averages and no action plan was required.

COSD reports are emailed to all MDT leads once available and discussed at monthly Trust Cancer Board meetings and also at MDT annual Operational meetings that take place between April and May of each year.”


Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust (February 2019)

We “have a band 4 clerk, who breaks up her working week by doing the Outstanding COSD data in the mornings and a different national audit each afternoon. NABCOP is assigned some time on one of these weekdays and the clerk is working more or less in real-time, and has a good working relationship with the Breast team to help get clinical support.”


East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust (February 2019)

We would highlight the contribution made by the breast team to achieve good data quality.  “They really rate the work the consultants do for providing key data like stage, they are one of the few teams that make a conscious effort to use pre-treatment TNM for as many patients as possible, as well as final integrated TNM for the surgical patients. They say their consultants are very approachable and responsive.”


If you have queries about how to submit COSD data to NCRAS, please contact the Data Improvement Lead within your area who will be able to help (listed below, or visit the NCRAS website)

NDRS office Data Improvement Lead Email address
National Karen Graham
East Midlands Simon Cairnes
Eastern Marianne Mollett
London Katrina Sung
North West Paul Stacey
Northern and Yorkshire Rachel Bethell
Oxford Gemma Feeney
South West James Withers
West Midlands Gemma Feeney

Note: Details are correct as of September 2021. Karen Graham will be covering West Midlands; Simon Cairnes will be covering Oxford from October 2021 – September 2022