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Independent Group Advising on the Release of Data

The Independent Group Advising on the Release of Data (IGARD) considers all requests for dissemination of confidential information, as defined in Section 263 of the Health & Social Care Act, through the Data Access Request Service (DARS).

We aim to improve transparency, accountability, quality and consistency through robust, independent scrutiny of NHS Digital data distributions, as well as providing a voice for stakeholders and the public.

IGARD also makes general recommendations or observations to NHS Digital about their processes, policies and procedures, including transparency measures such as registers.

Building confidence through information governance

NHS Digital takes the importance of information governance very seriously. Controls and procedures are in place to make sure we demonstrate the highest standard of stewardship and governance of the information we handle. NHS Digital makes sure that our processes are appropriate for governing the receipt, processing and publication of data that does not compromise confidentiality and maximises the use of information.

IGARD independently assesses applications for data. This ensures that the use of patient data within research, academia, the public and private sector is done in controlled environments, where any risks of disclosure are minimised.

Find out more about the IGARD review process.


IGARD membership

IGARD is made up of a panel of independent specialist and lay members. Find out more about our members.


Meeting dates

The next meeting dates are: 

  • 13 May
  • 20 May 
  • 27 May
  • 3 June
  • 17 June
  • 24 June
  • 1 July
  • 8 July
  • 15 July
  • 22 July
  • 29 July

Meeting minutes

The minutes from each IGARD meeting are published within a week of the following IGARD meeting. We publish a rolling 6 months of meeting minutes. If you have any questions, or if you need minutes from older IGARD or DAAG meetings, please email the IGARD Secretariat at IGARD@nhs.net.

May 2021

6 May - minutes will be published as soon as possible

April 2021

29 April - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 27 April 2021

22 April - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 20 April 2021

15 April - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 30 March 2021

March 2021

25 March - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 23 March 2021

18 March - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 16 March 2021

11 March - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 9 March 2021

4 March - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 2 March 2021

February 2021

25 February - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 23rd February 2021

18 February - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 16th February 2021

11 February - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 9th February 2021

4 February - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 2nd February 2021

January 2021

28 January - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 26th January 2021

21 January - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 19th January 2021

14 January - including the COVID-19 Response Meeting minutes from the 7th January and 12th January 2021

Older meeting minutes can be found on our archive.

Standard operating procedures and related documents


Further information

internal Data Access Request Service (DARS)

The Data Access Request Service (DARS) can offer clinicians, researchers and commissioners the data required to help improve NHS services. We handle applications, process data and provide access to specific sets of data when requests are approved.

Last edited: 7 May 2021 2:24 pm