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Structured Pathology Reporting of Cancer

The goal of the National Structured Pathology Reporting of Cancer Project is to develop a suite of standardised cancer protocols that will when implemented improve the completenesss of pathology reporting of cancer.

In June 2007, a National Round Table was held to discuss the use of structured pathology reporting of cancer throughout Australia. All who were present at The Round Table agreed that structured reporting of cancer cases in anatomical pathology and haematology is likely to contribute to better cancer control through improvements in:

  • Clinical management and treatment planning
  • Cancer notification, registration and aggregated analyses
  • Research.

The Cancer Institute NSW secured funding in February 2008 from the Dept of Health & Ageing (Quality Use of Pathology Programs) to work with the RCPA and Cancer Australia to develop an initial 6 reporting protocols (lung, melanoma, breast, colorectal, lymphoma and prostate) and a framework to guide development of the protocols, in partnership with national clinician and pathologist organisations.

Subsequent rounds of funding from the Dept of Health & Ageing (Quality Use of Pathology Programs) have been awarded to promote and expand the use of structured reporting of cancer. This program of work is being overseen by the Royal College of Pathologists Australasia with clinical consultation from the Cancer Institute, and in conjunction with Cancer Australia.

Cancer Protocols

Cancer protocols for many major cancers and reporting guides and forms have been developed.


A robust governance model supports the SPR project.


A number of documents are available to provide advice and guidance with implementation.

Macroscopic reporting

Access macroscopic dictation templates and specimen handling information at the RCPA online cut-up manual.


Keep up with the latest news on the structured reporting project both nationally and internationally via the quarterly newsletters.

Protocol Development

Each cancer protocol is developed under a quality framework which dictates both how the protocols look as well as what should be included.