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Cancer registries in Japan: National Clinical Database and site-specific cancer registries


The cancer registry is an essential part of any rational program of evidence-based cancer control. The cancer control program is required to strategize in a systematic and impartial manner and efficiently utilize limited resources. In Japan, the National Clinical Database (NCD) was launched in 2010. It is a nationwide prospective registry linked to various types of board certification systems regarding surgery. The NCD is a nationally validated database using web-based data collection software; it is risk adjusted and outcome based to improve the quality of surgical care. The NCD generalizes site-specific cancer registries by taking advantage of their excellent organizing ability. Some site-specific cancer registries, including pancreatic, breast, and liver cancer registries have already been combined with the NCD. Cooperation between the NCD and site-specific cancer registries can establish a valuable platform to develop a cancer care plan in Japan. Furthermore, the prognosis information of cancer patients arranged using population-based and hospital-based cancer registries can help in efficient data accumulation on the NCD. International collaboration between Japan and the USA has recently started and is expected to provide global benchmarking and to allow a valuable comparison of cancer treatment practices between countries using nationwide cancer registries in the future. Clinical research and evidence-based policy recommendation based on accurate data from the nationwide database may positively impact the public.

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We wish to thank all of the data managers and hospitals that participated in the NCD project for their great efforts in data entry. In addition, we wish to express appreciation to all the people and academies that cooperated in this project.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Author information

Correspondence to Mitsukazu Gotoh.

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Anazawa, T., Miyata, H. & Gotoh, M. Cancer registries in Japan: National Clinical Database and site-specific cancer registries. Int J Clin Oncol 20, 5–10 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10147-014-0757-4

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  • Cancer registry
  • Nationwide database
  • Risk factor
  • Risk model