Our approach

The design and delivery of the audits in NATCAN has been informed by our experience of delivering national audits in the Clinical Effectiveness Unit, built up since its inception in 1998. Key features of all audit projects within the CEU include:

  • Close clinical-methodological collaboration
  • Use of national existing linked datasets as much as possible
  • Close collaboration with data providers in England (National Disease Registration Service [NDRS], NHS Digital [NHSD]) and Wales (Wales Cancer Network [WCN], Public Health Wales [PHW])
  • A clinical epidemiological approach, informing quality improvement activities.
  • “Audit” informed by “research”.

All these features will support NATCAN’s focus on the three “Rs”, ensuring that all its activities are clinically relevant, methodologically robust, and technically rigorous.

Each individual cancer audit is jointly led by two clinical leads, representing the most relevant professional organisations, and senior academics with a track record in health services research, statistics, data science and clinical epidemiology, affiliated to the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

In addition, each audit will have a clinical fellow, who contributes to all aspects of the audits, reinforcing the audits’ clinical orientation and contributing to capacity building.

The delivery of the audit is coordinated by an audit manager who is supported by NATCAN’s wider infrastructure. Data scientists with experience in data management and statistics, and methodologists with experience in performance assessment and QI, work across audits.

This organisation creates “critical mass” and an audit capacity that is able to respond to the requirements of the funders (NHS England and Welsh Government), and to the wider stakeholder “family”.

Last updated: 29 November 2023, 3:38pm