National Cancer Diagnosis Audit Feedback

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Health Professional COVID-19 and Cancer Hub

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GP practices in Wales can still register for the National Cancer Diagnosis Audit 2019 using the link below.
Register for NCDAThe audits in England and Scotland are now closed and no longer open for registration.

The National Cancer Diagnosis Audit (NCDA) provides all participating GPs with a tailored feedback report on their practice’s data. The feedback reports are intended to help practices think about their clinical practice and service delivery in cancer and, in particular, early diagnosis.

The reports could:

  • Highlight examples of good practice
  • Identify potential areas for review and improvement
  • Help decide where to focus quality improvement activity
  • Identify variations at practice level
  • Provide comparative information for benchmarking

Support from Cancer Research UK's Facilitators and Macmillan GPs is available to help practices make the most of the results.

Feedback reports are made available as soon as the data have been analysed. Each practice will receive an interim report, summarising data submitted in the first six months of the audit, and a full report, covering the entire 12 month period. Participating GPs are notified once practice results are ready.

When a feedback report is issued, practices could consider:

  • A detailed review and discussion of results as a small team or at practice level
  • A review of current systems and processes in light of the results, followed by changes to systems and processes where applicable. These could include changes to referral practices or safety netting, recommendations for further education and training, or other quality improvement activities
  • Learning Event Analysis (LEAs) on certain cases or groups of cases guided by areas for development highlighted in the report

Suggestions for further actions following on from the findings can also be found in the “What to do next” chapter of the reports.

Note that practice reports are treated as confidential documents and will not be shared by the NCDA team with anyone beyond the practice. Practices may choose to share their report themselves, with other practices or with a Cancer Research UK Facilitator or Macmillan GP, to maximise learnings from taking part in the audit. However, it is not recommended that reports are shared more widely than this, due to the small risk of re-identifying patients.

Cancer Research UK Facilitators and Macmillan GPs are available for in-depth discussions about NCDA feedback reports and can help to run sessions with practice staff, sharing case studies and learnings from other practices. They can also provide certificates for activities relating to the NCDA that they undertake with healthcare staff, which can count towards CPD.

You can find out who your local facilitator is at and who your local Macmillan GP is by emailing (please note that not all areas will have a facilitator or Macmillan GP).

Many GPs undertook quality improvement activities as a result of the audit. Most often, these focused on referral behaviours, safety netting and cancer screening promotion.
Check out our NCDA case studies on the RCGP’s QI Ready platform:


“When doing the audit we realised our follow up process for abnormal blood test results could be tightened up. We’re now looking at this in our practice to see how best to approach this.”  - GP, Buckinghamshire


“Three patients identified from the audit warranted more in depth discussion and reflection and has resulted in review and changes to our practice systems. Themes identified from these case reviews included that the recording of safety netting advice was not done as well as it could be. The need for more robust questioning of symptoms and reporting of safety netting decisions and advice was acknowledged in our practice with the use of Ardens (clinical templates within SystemOne software) to trigger safety netting advice for the patient. We are also using written safety netting advice which is handed to patients regarding their referral.” - GP, Portsmouth


“Tiredness as a first symptom of lung cancer was a surprisingly common finding in our audit data. We also had a pancreatic cancer which initially presented as new onset diabetes. Look out for this in patients without a particularly high BMI.” - GP, Manchester


"Our participation in the cancer audit was a straightforward and worthwile task. We identified one SEA and our reflections were utlised for appraisal purposes." - GP, Scottish Highlands

If you have any learning from the audit that you would like to share so others can benefit, please contact the team.

Contact us

For questions and queries about the NCDA results, contact your local Cancer Research UK facilitator or email us at

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