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Taking the Pulse of Cancer Registries: Survey Findings

By Stephanie Hannigan

At Inspirata, we continuously strive to understand and address the unique needs of the cancer registry community. To gain insight into the current state of cancer registries, we recently conducted a survey to gauge the community’s satisfaction with their current processes, uncover pain points, and determine the factors that are most important in the evaluation of cancer registry automation software. We’ve compiled and analyzed the responses of over 100 cancer registry professionals from across the country and are pleased to share our key findings.

Current Satisfaction Levels

Survey results show that the majority (67%) of cancer registry professionals are generally satisfied with their current casefinding and abstracting processes. Although this is a positive sentiment, there’s still room for improvement, as 22% of respondents remain neutral and 10% are dissatisfied.

Uncovering the Pain Points

Despite the relatively high level of satisfaction as highlighted above, respondents seem to be fairly aligned on several challenges facing their cancer registries. Four challenges specifically appear to be the leading causes of pain, as they were flagged by approximately 40% of respondents:

  • Staffing or workplace shortage
  • Concurrent abstracting
  • Abstracting backlogs
  • No time to perform registry quality control

Factors in Evaluating a Potential Solution

When it comes to evaluating cancer registry automation software, price (66%) and time/cost savings (58%) emerge as top concerns. The accuracy and effectiveness of a solution’s NLP is important to 62% of respondents, indicating the value they place on reliable and precise AI/NLP tools. The ability to read pathology reports (40%) and radiology reports (30%) were also significant factors.

A Collaborative Future, Not a Job Eliminator

According to survey results, 56% of respondents disagree with the notion that AI/NLP will eliminate their jobs. Meanwhile, 33% remain neutral and only a fraction of respondents (11%) feel that their jobs may be at risk. These results suggest that a majority of cancer registry professionals view AI/NLP technology as a tool that can complement and enhance their work rather than as a threat to their job security.

Embracing Innovation: The Future of Cancer Registries

The insights gathered from this survey certainly help to shed light on the current state of cancer registries and identify the areas where technology can help drive impactful change. If you haven’t already, we invite you to take the survey and contribute your valuable perspectives to this ongoing conversation.

Tags: cancer informatics, NLP, cancer registry