All physicians, hospitals and other relevant institutions in the country must send a notification to Finnish Cancer Registry of all cancer cases that come to their attention. Some pathological, cytological and haematological laboratories still send the respective laboratory notification filled in manually, but the majority of laboratory notifications are currently automatically extracted from laboratory data systems. In addition, Statistics Finland sends information of all death certificates where cancer is mentioned.

The cancer notifications submitted to the Finnish Cancer Registry are immediately stored in a database that contains data on virtually all cancers diagnosed in Finland since 1953. This data base is used for statistical and research purposes.