The South African National Cancer Registry (NCR), is a division of National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS). The NCR serves as South Africa’s main source of national cancer incidence data. Since 1986, the NCR has conducted pathology-based cancer surveillance, where data on cancer cases diagnosed by histology, cytology and bone marrow aspirate and trephine are collected, analysed and reported annually.

In 2011, Regulation no. 380 of the National Health Act no. 61 of 2003 was created to legally establish the NCR and to make cancer a reportable disease. The regulation provided a mandate to establish a population-based cancer registry. Since January 2017, population based cancer data are collected from Ekurhuleni metropolitan municipality in Gauteng Province. The Ekurhuleni Population Based Cancer Registry (EPBCR) meets the gold standard criteria for cancer registration worldwide as all cancers that are diagnosed clinically, radiologically and pathologically are collected.


The objectives of NCR are:

  • To collect, analyse and report cancer statistics in South Africa;
  • To guide and support the Department of Health on cancer initiatives and other cancer programs from NGOs, NPOs and any other parties interested in cancer prevention, control and care in South Africa; and
  • To inform cancer policy and guideline in South Africa.


The functions of the NCR are:

  • Cancer Research;
  • Cancer surveillance; and
  • Teaching and Training.


Centre head: Dr Elvira Singh

Dr Elvira Singh is the Head of the South African National Cancer Registry, a division of the NHLS. She qualified with a medical degree in 2000 and completed her specialisation in Public Health Medicine in 2009 when she was awarded the Henry Gluckman Medal for the best candidate in the College of Public Health Fellowship examination. She represents the NCR on the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Cancer Prevention and Control and has a keen interest in optimising cancer surveillance for South Africa. She has a sound knowledge of the South African health system and her interests include health systems strengthening for cancer care, cancer surveillance and epidemiology.    

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Ms Evelyn Nkosi
Tel: +27 11 555 0548
Email: evelynn@nicd.ac.za

For permission to use NCR data, contact Dr Elvira Singh @ ElviraS@nicd.ac.za

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