Cancer Outcomes and Services Dataset (COSD)

There is one version of the (COSD) dataset available  v8.0 (2018).

COSD v7.0 has now been retired. If you try to access the v7.0 downloads page you will be re-directed to the COSD home page.

Select the v8.0 downloads button to download all the relevant documentation for that version:

COSD v8.0 downloads button

See below for further information and guidance:

What is the COSD?

The Cancer Outcome and Services Data set (COSD) has been the national standard for reporting cancer in the NHS in England since January 2013.  

See Background to the COSD for more information.

COSD changes 2018 (v8.0)

This is the new version of COSD and comes into effect from 1 April 2018.

Select the v8.0 downloads button to access all the relevant documentation required to implement and support this version of COSD.

The v8.0 downloads page contains versions of the COSD Dataset, Guidance and supporting documentation for both the main COSD dataset and the final pathology specific dataset. It also includes links to download the schema packs to support structured XML submissions.

See the NHS Digital website for all other documentation, including the new Specification and Implementation guide. 

COSD v8.0 implementation timescales image

Implementation timescale for v8.0   

Implementation will be between 29 September 2017 and 31 March 2018.  During this time, please refer to both the v8.0 Implementation Guide and User Guides to help with development of the standard.

At a later stage, you will need the Technical Guides and Schema packs to write and then test your reporting modules.

Data collection using v8.0 will start from 1 April 2018. There will be with a three month roll-out period between 1 April 2018 and 30 June 2018 to help and support suppliers and developers.

Full conformance is required from 1 July 2018.

What's new in COSD v8.0

In COSD v8.0 many cancer in Children, Teenagers and Young Adults (CTYA) items have been moved either to their parent tumour site or to the CORE. It was felt these items could also be collected on adult patients. This has removed duplication across the data set and is hoped will also improve ascertainment over time. 

Other new features in v8.0 include:

  • a whole new pathway to accurately record recurrence, progression and transformation
  • new data to help identify and analyse the Trust or Organisation where the patient was staged
  • a new section for recording risk factors
  • an updated clinical trials section
  • a new clinical data set for Liver cancer

Many data have been re-aligned across the data set into the correct higher level groupings. The data set maintains its ability to be interpreted within two subsets of data:


  • this was part of the last standard and continues to be mandated across all Trusts to supply these data in COSD XML directly from their pathology departments
  • it uses a different schema from COSD. There are unique linkage for pathology and it therefore requires its own schema

Patient Pathway

  • this is the data excluding Pathology, which the Cancer Services Teams need to collect. By removing the pathology data from their workload, this could reduce their burden of data collection by up to 30% across the whole data set
  • as these data are now collected and submitted by the pathology departments directly, it is a huge burden of duplication if we ask the Cancer Services (non-clinical) teams to transcribe the same data into COSD via a Trust's (Cancer Information Systems

Wherever possible, duplication across the data set has now been removed and full explanations of how to collect these data within the new structure provided within the changelog of the data set.

Where there were data that are no longer part of a linked national data set (for example, Royal College of Pathologists), these have also been removed from the data set.

Collaboration between the (CWT) data set developers and COSD have improved both data sets by removing or enhancing specific shared data items.

Submission Schedule

The schedule below gives the deadline for Providers to submit the COSD data for each calendar month of diagnosis/treatment. There is a later deadline for PAS feeds.

Feedback reports for the data submitted are available through the CancerStats website.   

  Submission dates for 2018

Month of diagnosis/treatment                            

Submission due date (MDT/Pathology/NPCA) Submission due date (PAS)  
January 2018 7 March 2018 21 March 2018
February 2018 6 April 2018  20 April 2018 
March 2018  8 May 2018  22 May 2018 
April 2018  6 June 2018  20 June 2018 
May 2018  5 July 2018  19 July 2018 
June 2018  3 August 2018  17 August 2018 
July 2018  5 September 2018  19 September 2018 
August 2018  5 October 2018  19 October 2018 
September 2018  2 November 2018  16 November 2018 
October 2018  5 December 2018  19 December 2018 
November 2018  9 January 2019  23 January 2019 
December 2018  5 February 2019  18 February 2019 

  Submission dates for 2019

Month of diagnosis/treatment                            

Submission due date (MDT/Pathology/NPCA) Submission due date (PAS)  
January 2019 7 March 2019 21 March 2019
February 2019 4 April 2019 18 April 2019
March 2019 8 May 2019 22 May 2019
April 2019 6 June 2019 20 June 2019
May 2019 5 July 2019 19 July 2019
June 2019 2 August 2019 16 August 2019
July 2019 5 September 2019  19 September 2019
August 2019 4 October 2019 18 October 2019
September 2019 4 November 2019 18 November 2019
October 2019 5 December 2019 19 December 2019
November 2019 8 January 2020 22 January 2020
December 2019 5 February 2020 19 February 2020

NCRAS Regional Liaison Managers

Eastern Marianne Mollett   Tel: 01223 724 449  -   Mob: 07585 883 534 
East Midlands Simon Cairnes

 Tel: 0161 234 9502  -   Mob: 07825 281384
London & South East Katrina Sung   Tel: 02036 820 723  -   Mob:07468 716 262 
Northern & Yorkshire Laura Prenton  Tel: 0113 8557 264  -     Mob: 07500 227 791
North West Simon Cairnes  Tel: 0161 234 9502  -     Mob: 07825 281384
Oxford Gemma Feeney  Tel: 0121 214 9111  -   Mob: 07971 828638
South West James Withers  Tel: 0117 9069 056  -   Mob: 07792 912 255
West Midlands Gemma Feeney  Tel: 0121 214 9111  -   Mob: 07971 828638


A revised Conformance Framework has been published to align with v8.0. This is the current Framework and is available from the v7.0 Downloads webpage. 

This Framework v6.1a, has been amended to take account of the changes within v7.0 and will be reviewed at the end of 2017.

The Conformance Framework provides:

  • an outline of the conformance and quality checking reports provided following submission
  • information on the processes for dealing with any problems in submission and the escalation process if issues cannot be resolved locally

The Conformance Framework should be viewed together with the Data Transfer Partnership Agreement completed by Providers, which gives key contacts and details of the data they submit to the NCRS.

Sign up to receive the COSD newsletter

The COSD Advisory Board produces a newsletter about twice a year and more often when needed. The newsletter provides supporting information about the progress of COSD and other important and useful information for Trusts including:  

  • audit data
  • COSD roadshows news and feedback
  • updates on cancer reporting and CancerStats
  • changes to recurrence reporting and (TNM) classifications

So that we send people information they will find useful and want to receive, we only circulate the newsletter to those who have set up an account and are on our mailing list. 

If you don't currently receive the newsletter and would like to be on the mailing list,  email us at To help us make the information we circulate as useful as possible, please include these details about you:

  • name
  • job title
  • organisation
  • contact email and telephone number

We'll then set up an account for you to receive future newsletters. Let us know if you'd also like to receive copies of previous newsletters and we'll send these to you. 

Alternatively, you can set up an account to receive future newsletters. Go to join our mailing list, complete the details on the form and select 'COSD Newsletter' from the options list.

Anyone who would find the newsletter and other information we circulate useful can join our mailing list. These include Consultants, Cancer Managers, MDT Coordinators and IT or audit experts.  

From time to time, we also get in touch by email to check that the details we have on our database are up to date and you still want to be included on the mailing list.

Help and feedback

Contact the COSD helpdesk: COSDenquiries at phe dot link with queries, requests for further information, comments and suggestions for newsletter content or possible new data to be considered for future COSD version changes.

We value feedback and suggestions for improvements to COSD. Late in 2017, a new COSD Change Request form will be available via the CancerStats website. Change requests will be reviewed quarterly by the COSD Advisory group and where agreed, will form part of future iterations of COSD. This new addition will help us to keep COSD current and provide a greater level of consultation and engagement in the development process.