At NHS Digital, we take the importance of information governance very seriously. We have controls and procedures in place to make sure we demonstrate the highest standard of stewardship and governance of the information we handle, including the MHSDS.
We conform to the standards of the Governance Committee (formerly the National Information Governance Board), the national body that protects the interests of patients in how their data are used, shared and stored in the NHS and adult social care.
Patient identifiable data is collected extensively across all areas of health for both clinical and management purposes. The Governance Committee's Care Record Guarantee sets out the "commitment that NHS organisations and those providing care on behalf of the NHS will use records in ways that respect patient rights and promote your health and well-being." This principle is applied across all national data collections including all of our mental health information.
We make sure individual patients cannot be identified by creating a pseudonymised patient identifier which is used in national aggregate reporting.
We make sure all data is kept secure whilst it is being submitted. The Bureau Service Web Portal which is used to submit the data has secure 'https' technology to encrypt data transmitted across the N3 network. The portal has successfully passed extensive testing designed to identify any security issues.
The data we collect will help us to understand how services operate, the treatments they provide and the outcomes they achieve - and helps improve the way they are delivered.
Read more about how we look after confidential information.