The mission of the Louisiana Tumor Registry is to describe the burden of cancer in Louisiana by collecting complete and high-quality cancer data and by compiling timely statistics so that data-driven cancer prevention and control programs can be implemented in the state to reduce cancer morbidity and mortality.
Cancer registration in Louisiana began in 1947 at the Charity Hospital Tumor Registry in New Orleans. In 1974, as part of its Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Program, the National Cancer Institute provided funds for a population-based cancer incidence and survival registry covering Jefferson, Orleans, and St. Bernard parishes.
Five years later, the Louisiana Tumor Registry (LTR) was transferred to the state Office of Public Health, which expanded the LTR catchment area in 1983 to include all 35 parishes of South Louisiana (Regions I-V). In 1988, when the 29 parishes of North Louisiana (Regions VI-VIII) were added, statewide coverage was achieved.
Milestones in the history of the LTR include:
- 1974: The LTR became one of the original participants in the National Program of Cancer Registries, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
- 1995: The LTR was transferred from the Office of Public Health to the LSU Board of Supervisors. Since then, the LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans has been responsible for the cancer registry program, providing the state funding.
- 2001: The Louisiana Tumor Registry was selected as one of four new expansion registries to join the prestigious SEER Program after a rigorous competitive application process.
Oversight of the registry is exercised by the Louisiana Cancer and Lung Trust Fund Board. Members of this board represent various health institutions throughout the state and are appointed by the governor.