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Data Access Environment (DAE)


The Data Access Environment (DAE) is the secure way users can remotely access better linked information, while ensuring the right person, with the right permissions gets the right data, in accordance with their Data Sharing Agreement (DSA).

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News: The publication date for HES 2019/20 M2 data has been postponed to Thursday 25 July.  Data will be available in DAE shortly after publication.

Providing access to data through our secure environment reduces the need for it to leave NHS Digital. What’s more, users can take their insights to the next level by using a range of built-in tools to interrogate, analyse and visualise data for a more complete picture of health and care.

DAE forms the access point of our improved Data Processing Services, a central system that will give us the power to process larger volumes of data – faster than we have ever done before. 

DAE and our improved data processing services

We are using modern Data Processing Services to streamline and automate our existing ways of collecting, processing and accessing data.

DAE is the access element of these new services and is the way most users will experience:

  • faster data availability
  • better linked data across data sets
  • powerful tools for analysis and visualisation

These improvements mean we can provide customers with the information they need to make quicker decisions and actions, to improve health and care. 

Watch our short video about DAE. 



Migrating from Healthcare Data Interrogation Service (HDIS) to DAE

We are committed to improving access to the data we hold and providing robust, sustainable technology and tools to support our customers. As part of this commitment, we’re migrating HDIS (Healthcare Data Interrogation Service) to the new DAE service. This is the first service to be migrated to DAE and HDIS users will benefit from fast, secure access to better-linked data and powerful tools for deeper analysis. 

Data sharing agreements

HES data will be available in DAE in accordance with your data sharing agreement.  We are in the process of amending HDIS customers data sharing agreements to grant access to DAE.

NHS Digital will:

  • amend your data sharing agreement to grant access to DAE
  • contact you directly about your next steps for accessing online HES data using DAE, following the successful migration of your data sharing agreement. 

VMware and RSA tokens are not required for accessing DAE. RSA tokens will need to be returned to NHS Digital when requested to do so.

HDIS availability extended until September

To support transition, we’re extending the availability of the legacy HDIS system until Friday 27 September.

User support and guidance

View DAE service announcements and outages
View the latest DAE news

Guidance documents

Download the DAE setup guide.
Download the Accessing HES with DAE guide.

Staying up to date

Contact us

To discuss any aspect of DARS or an existing application call the DARS team on 0300 303 5678 or email

Related pages

  1. 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.

  2. internal

    DAE news

    Latest news about the Data Access Environment (DAE).

  3. internal

    Master Person Service (MPS)

    Master Person Service (MPS) is an enhanced patient-matching algorithm that increases the number of linkable records where incomplete records have been submitted.

  4. external

    HES user training video

    This video explains how to use HES data. It provides users with valuable context, leading to a better understanding of the data and how it's produced.

Last edited: 16 July 2019 1:56 pm