Cancer Liaison Physicians (CLP’s) are the link between the cancer committee and the cancer data. Part of their role and responsibility is to evaluate, interpret and present the cancer program’s performance using the National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) data at least 4 times each year. Utilizing tools and resources such as the Cancer Quality Improvement Program (CQIP) provided by NCDB this enables programs to review their performance of various cancer sites and measures.
CQIP is an annual data report that is sent out to all Commission on Cancer (CoC) accredited cancer programs. A confidential power point is available through CoC datalinks for access by key program leaders including the CLP. The power point consists of the following information for the CLP to cherry pick which components he or she determines is most useful for their cancer program:
- General overview and value of CoC accreditation and role of quality improvement at the local level
- Various CoC adopted quality measures including some endorsed by the National Quality Forum (NQF) along with surveillance measures
- Volume and 30-day mortality rates for select high risk cancer operations
- Number of surgical resections for selected cancers
- Unadjusted, 30, 90 day mortality after select complex cancer operations
- Site-specific focused reports for breast, colon, non-small cell lung cancer, prostate cancer and melanoma of the skin by stage distribution, distance traveled and treatment comparisons by stage compared to national data
- Administrative data will include cancer program volume, in and out-migration rates and insurance status. These data presentations by the CLP is an effort to improve the efficiency and quality of cancer care. This also allows the program to discuss the relationship between increased quality, improved patient outcomes, and decrease expenses. Lastly, this can inspire programs to conduct in-depth quality reviews to develop and implement corrective action plans. CQIP has become an exemplary tool and resource that cancer programs have embraced the opportunity to obtain a big picture of their cancer program and performance. CQIP may inevitably benefit the community the program services, while sharing with providers the depth and interest of cancer care at their facility.