DATA and SURVEILLANCE COMMITTEE
Brenda Cartmel and Lou Gonsalves
The role of the Data and Surveillance Committee is to support the surveillance and efforts of the Connecticut Cancer Partnership by:
- Helping its committees to achieve consistency in assessment, monitoring, and evaluation of activities related to the objectives of the Connecticut Cancer Plan 2009- 2013;
- Increasing the use and timely dissemination of available information regarding cancer burden across the continuum of cancer care.
The Data and Surveillance Committee may support the work of the Partnership committees through the following activities.
- Identify opportunities for collaboration among committees to minimize duplication of efforts and/or enhance the analytic value of the information collected.
- Advise the committees on new data / surveillance that may impact the work of the committees.
- Identify and monitor emerging issues related to cancer and the data needs of the committees.
- Technical Assistance:
- Advise committees on setting baselines, key indicators of success, and measurable outcomes.
- Identify existing cancer-related data sources, characteristics, and contact information for the responsible organization.
- Review data- related materials developed on behalf of the Partnership (e.g., data requests, survey instruments, data reports)
- Work with committees to assess education/training needs related to surveillance and evaluation.
- Identify/provide opportunities for education/training on surveillance and evaluation.
- Provide guidance on methods of data collection, analysis and interpretation.
Major Sources of Cancer Data for Connecticut
Connecticut has a well-established system of cancer surveillance. The Connecticut General Statutes require that all new cancer cases, inpatient hospitalizations for cancer, and deaths due to cancer be reported to the Connecticut Tumor Registry, Connecticut Office of Health Care Access, and Connecticut Department of Public Health:
- The Connecticut Tumor Registry is the oldest state registry of reported cancers in the United States with records dating back to 1935. It is a part of the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Program and, together with other SEER registries across the country, comprises the data system used for setting national cancer prevention and treatment priorities. The Connecticut Tumor Registry also serves as a data source for research projects focused on specific cancer-related issues and trends locally, nationally and internationally.
- The Hospital Discharge and Billing Database, established in 1991 and maintained by the Office of Health Care Access, provides a means for assessing hospitalization trends, including costs, for Connecticut residents. These data are a potential source for many cancer-specific analyses and are a significant source for economic analyses of hospitalizations.
- The Connecticut Death Registry has been in existence since 1848 and is maintained by the Department of Public Health Vital Records Section. These data include cause of death information and provide a means for tracking mortality trends of cancer-related deaths.
The Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System in Connecticut is part of a national state-based system of health surveys that collects information on health risk behaviors, preventive health practices, and health care access in adults, including those related to cancer. Through the Connecticut School Health Survey, which has a Youth Tobacco Component and a Youth Behavior Component, data on cancer- and tobacco-related behaviors of students in Connecticut are collected. Other types of cancer-related data are collected via specialized studies and by programs such as the Connecticut Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program.
The Data and Surveillance Committee (formerly the Data, Surveillance and Evaluation committee) of the Connecticut Cancer Partnership was instrumental in guiding the development of the Connecticut Comprehensive Cancer Control Plan, 2005-2008 and the new Connecticut Cancer Plan, 2009-2013. Throughout implementation of the Plan, the Committee will serve as a resource to other Partnership committees for coordination, technical assistance, and education.
Click on the link below to download the Data, Surveillance, and Evaluation chapter of the Connecticut Cancer Plan.