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NLCA annual report 2017

The National Lung Cancer Audit (NLCA) annual report 2017 demonstrates the key findings from the 13th annual audit for lung cancer patients diagnosed in 2016 in England, Wales and Guernsey. The purpose of the audit is to review the quality of lung cancer care, to highlight areas for improvement and to reduce variation in practice.

This report covers patients with lung cancer first diagnosed in 2016, and includes 39,041 patients: 36,761 in England; 2,240 in Wales; and 40 in Guernsey.

In our 2016 annual report (patients diagnosed in 2015), we made recommendations that lung cancer services should set out to achieve, covering data quality, process of care and treatment. Below we report the overall national performance (England, Wales, Guernsey) against these measures.

Key findings

  • 37% of patients are alive at least 1 year after diagnosis, which is a significant improvement to the 31% diagnosed in 2010.
  • For the first time, the audit has identified the highest and lowest-performing organisations from England and Wales; this is to improve learning between organisations and help reduce variation in care. Further details can be found in our outlier policy.
  • The rate of patients being seen by a lung cancer nurse specialist (LCNS) has improved, with 71% of patients being seen and 58% having an LCNS present at the time of diagnosis.
  • There has been a further increase in the number of patients receiving surgery and 17.5% of non-small cell lung cancer patients diagnosed in 2016 received surgery compared to 16.7% of patients diagnosed in 2016.
  • We have stopped measuring the case ascertainment rate for trusts as the NLCA now uses cancer registration data and we now capture all lung cancer cases.

Patients and carers

Released in March 2018, our patient-level booklet helps to inform lung cancer patients, their families and their carers about the level of care they can expect. We have worked closely with Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, and patients, to create this booklet, which showcases the results from our 2017 annual report.