Notification of cancer

All cases of cancer must be reported to the Western Australian Department of Health.

For the purposes of notification, cancer means any malignant growth of human tissue which, if unchecked, is likely to spread to adjacent tissues and beyond its site of origin. This includes all:

  • in situ neoplasms
  • malignant neoplasms other than primary basal cell carcinoma and primary squamous cell carcinoma (whether invasive or in situ ) of the skin
  • malignant neoplasms of the brain, spinal cord and cranial nerves, and any other intracranial neoplasms, whether benign or malignant
  • other malignant neoplasms.

There is a separate statutory reporting requirement for the results of cervical cancer testing in relation to the Cervical Screening Registry.

Relevant legislation

The statutory requirement to notify cases of cancer is specified in part two of the Health (Western Australian Cancer Register) Regulations 2011 (external site).

Responsibility for notification

Two groups have responsibility for reporting cancer:

  • pathologists (including haematologists) who diagnose/report the presence of cancer
  • radiation oncologists treating cancer (on the first occasion of treatment).

Who must be notified

Under the Regulations the Chief Health Officer must be notified.

How to notify

A written report and/or copies of any pathology reports need to be forwarded to the Manager, Western Australian Cancer Registry, including the following information:

  • the full name and address of the person
  • the sex and date of birth of the person
  • the type of cancer for which that person is being treated (if applicable)
  • the name of the medical practitioner by whom the person is referred for examination
  • if the person is a patient in a hospital, the name and address of the hospital.

Who should be notified?

Notifications should be forwarded to the Manager Western Australian Cancer Registry.

Notification due

As soon as possible, preferably within 30 days.


To make a notification, or for more information on notification of cancer, contact:

Western Australian Cancer Registry
Health Information Centre
Phone: 9222 4022
Fax: 9222 4199
Postal address:
Western Australian Cancer Registry
Health Information Centre
Department of Health
PO Box 8172
Perth Business Centre WA 6849

For information on cancer and cancer statistics refer to the Western Australian Cancer Registry (external site).


Produced by

Public Health