As the nation acknowledges “National Cancer Registrars Week”, Certified Tumor Registrars (CTRs) are celebrated for their profession’s role in the goal of preventing cancer and finding a cure. So, what exactly is this role? you may ask, and how is a CTR qualified?
What role does a CTR play in the goal of finding a cure for cancer?
The cancer data a CTR collects, is used on a local-level to improve the quality of cancer care and treatment at hospitals, and by physicians and clinicians. This same data is also used by individual states and on a national-level, for evaluating and monitoring cancer treatment; designing cancer prevention programs; and for research and control programs. The cancer data collected on diagnosis, treatment and survivorship are collected for every cancer patient in the U.S. by CTRs!
How is a CTR qualified/certified?
Becoming a CTR is no easy task! It requires experience, education and certification in the cancer registry field, and signifies professional excellence. This education includes an undergraduate degree or completion of an approved Cancer Registry Management certificate program. To even be eligible to sit for the certification exam, cancer registrars must first gain experience through a structured clinical practicum or with one-year of employment in a cancer registry. The National Cancer Registrars Association (NCRA) is the professional organization that develops and establishes certification criteria and requirements and ensures cancer registrars are educated and credentialed.
Patient care and treatment decisions are driven by data. For cancer, this is the data that certified cancer registry professionals collect and report to local and national agencies, helping physicians, researchers and public health officials. All of which impact the future of cancer care and treatment for patients, not only throughout the country, but in the very communities in which we each live!
Happy National Cancer Registrars Week to all CTRs!