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Mental health: guidance for service providers and suppliers

Information on the Mental Health Services Data Set (MHSDS) including technical specifications and guidance for providers and suppliers. The purpose of this page is to support improvements in data quality by providing links to guidance and resources available for the MHSDS.


It is mandatory for all providers of NHS-funded specialist secondary mental health services to submit data about these services to the Mental Health Services Data Set (MHSDS). This applies to both NHS and independent providers.

Collection of this data is mandated via the Information Standard DCB0011:

Mental Health Services Data Set standards and collections

This page includes the following key documents:

  • Requirements specification
  • Change specifications
  • Implementation guidance
  • Information Standards Notice

If you are unsure if your organisation is in scope for the MHSDS, please refer to the Requirements Specification document.

Data set information

Information on the data set and why it is collected.

Mental Health Services Data Set

How to start submitting

To supplement the detailed guidance provided below, a high-level summary is available to new submitters to guide them through the process. This information is available in the Guide to MHSDS submissions

Guide to MHSDS Submissions

Further information on how to submit data to the Mental Health Services Data Set is available at:

Mental Health Services Data Set - Data submission

Technical specifications and guidance

Technical specifications and guidance documentation for the Mental Health Services Data Set including:

  • Organisational assessment and planning tools
  • Submission guidance documents
  • Technical Output Specification
  • MHSDS XML extract schemas

Mental Health Services Data Set specifications and guidance

Guidance on changes to system supplier or care provider 

Below we provide links to additional guidance to support providers in identifying the data that should be submitted for specific pathways in the MHSDS.

Out of area placements in adult acute mental health inpatient services – recording guidance

Handout - Recording Out of Area Placements (OAPs) in MHSDS 

Handout - Recording Delayed Transfers of Care (DToC) in MHSDS

Early intervention in psychosis - recording and reporting (external link)

Dementia care guidance, appendices and helpful resources (external link)

Submission windows

Dates for MHSDS monthly submission windows.

Mental Health Services Data Set - Data submission

Last edited: 20 November 2019 11:30 am