NHS Digital, in collaboration with NHS England and other partners, is developing a number of digital services that will put patients/service users in charge of their own health and care, enabling them to manage aspects of their own care, to contribute to the care process and as such reduce pressure on frontline NHS and social care services. These digital services contain personal information and as such it is essential that only the correct person has access. At present services repeatedly require a means of verifying and authenticating an individual’s identity.
The intention is to introduce a national citizen identity platform which will enable people to prove their identity once, in a manner which is convenient to them, thereby building public confidence in, and encouraging greater use of, all local and national digital health and care services.
A fundamental requirement of that platform is a nationally agreed approach to identity management for health and care, conformant with identify assurance principles endorsed by the government. This information standard sets out this agreed approach.
This information standard is published under section 250 of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. An Information Standards Notice (see below) provides an overview of scope and implementation timescales, and the other documents provide further detail for those who have to implement the information standard.