The RCOphth NOD National Cataract Audit collects data on cataract surgery performed in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Guernsey. It aims to drive improvement in the quality of care for patients undergoing cataract surgery by identifying variations in access to, and outcomes of cataract surgery. The audit is an important quality assurance measure of the most frequently performed surgical procedure undertaken in the NHS.


The main objectives of this project are to:

  • Build on proof of concept work already achieved by the National Ophthalmology Database regarding the extraction, analysis and reporting of data, including surgeon-level reporting
  • Prospectively collect, collate and analyse a standardised, nationally agreed dataset from all cataract centres providing cataract surgery in the United Kingdom
  • Update benchmark standards for cataract care and surgery
  • Identify surgery outcomes and risk factors which will help to improve patient safety
  • Utilise validated measures of quality which discriminate between centres and surgeons
  • Submit relevant aspects of the audit for peer reviewed publication in medical journals
  • Publication of results for centres and surgeons


Data is collected as a by-product of routine clinical care using Electronic Medical Records (EMR) systems in Hospital Eye Services. The RCOphth NOD is not limited to any particular EMR or database supplier. Data collection is in progress for the sixth year of the cataract audit which will run from 01 April 2021 – 31 March 2022.