A panel of experts from Italian Comprehensive Cancer Centers defines the recom- mendations for external quality control programs aimed to accreditation to excellence of these institutes. After definition of the process as a systematic, periodic evaluation performed by an external agency to verify whether a health organization possesses certain prerequisites regarding structural, organizational and operational conditions that are thought to affect health care quality, the panel reviews models internationally available and makes final recommendations on aspects considered of main interest. This position paper has been produced within a special project of the Ministry of Health of the Italian Government aimed to accredit, according to OECI model, 11 Ital- ian cancer centers in the period 2012-2014. The Project represents the effort under- taken by this network of Comprehensive Cancer Centers to find a common denomi- nator for the experience of all Institutes in external quality control programs. Fourteen shared “statements” are put forth, designed to offer some indications on the main aspects of this subject, based on literature evidence or expert opinions. They deal with the need for “accountability” and involvement of the entire organization, the effectiveness of self-evaluation, the temporal continuity and the educational val- ue of the experience, the use of indicators and measurement tools, additionally for in- tra- and inter-organization comparison, the system of evaluation models used, the provision for specific requisites for oncology, and the opportunity for mutual ex- change of evaluation experiences.
- accreditation, cancer in- stitute, quality improvement, research