Frequently asked questions for Professionals

What is the National Prostate Cancer Audit (NPCA)?

This is a national clinical audit assessing the quality of services and care provided to men with prostate cancer in England and Wales. The National Prostate Cancer Audit collects clinical information about the treatment of all patients newly diagnosed with prostate cancer in England and Wales and information about their outcomes.

The NPCA determines whether the care received by men is consistent with current recommended practice, such as those outlined in the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) Guidelines and Quality Standards as well as to provide information to support healthcare providers, commissioners and regulators in helping improve care for patients.

Who is running the NPCA?

The NPCA is run by the Clinical Effectiveness Unit (CEU) of The Royal College of Surgeons of England (RCS), the British Association of Urological Surgeons and the British Uro-oncology Group. We are funded by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership (HQIP) as part of the National Clinical Audit and Patient Outcomes Programme. The day to day running of the NPCA is based at the RCS and is managed by a project team including clinicians, audit experts and cancer information specialists.

Which patients are included in the NPCA?

All men with an ICD-10 diagnostic code of C61 (malignant neoplasm of the prostate) newly diagnosed in England from 1st April 2014 and one year later in Wales, from 1st April 2015.

How are patient data being collected?

The NPCA works with the National Cancer Registration and Analysis Service (NCRAS), Public Health England as a data collection partner in England, which collects patient-level data from all NHS acute providers and from a range of national data-feeds. This includes the Cancer Outcomes and Services Dataset (COSD), which specifies the data items to be submitted routinely by service providers via MDT electronic data collection systems to the National Cancer Data Repository (NCDR) on a monthly basis. Clinical sign-off of data submitted to NCRAS is not currently mandated in England.

The Wales Cancer Network (WCN), Public Health Wales is the NPCA’s data collection partner in Wales however the data collection process in Wales differs from England. The NPCA dataset is captured through a national system, Cancer Information System for Wales (CaNISC), after identification by hospital cancer services and uploaded via electronic MDT data collection systems. Prior to submission of NPCA data to the WCN each patient record is validated, frequently by an MDT coordinator, and signed off by a designated clinician. Patient records are signed off when all key data items have been completed.

Further information about these organisations and the data they collect can be found here.

Who can take part in the audit?

All NHS Trusts in England and Health Boards in Wales that provide prostate cancer services.

Does my hospital have to participate in the NPCA?

Yes, all NHS healthcare providers are expected to participate in relevant HQIP-funded projects within the National Clinical Audit and Patient Outcomes Programme. The NPCA is one of these projects.

Details of the statutory and mandatory requirements for clinical audit are available on the HQIP website .

Is the NPCA included in the reporting for annual Quality Accounts?

Yes, the NPCA is included in the Quality Accounts list for 17/18 and 18/19.

I have a question that is not answered in the FAQs

For all queries related to the NPCA, please contact us.