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New HSCN connections

Health and social care organisations can buy HSCN connectivity from a choice of HSCN suppliers within a competitive marketplace. To support organisations to connect to HSCN we have created a 4-step customer journey.

Buy HSCN connectivity

Health and social care organisations, as HSCN consumers, can buy HSCN connectivity from a choice of suppliers within a competitive marketplace. 

A list of HSCN suppliers is published and kept up to date on the supplying HSCN services webpage. Consumers can engage with any consumer network service provider (CNSP) to procure HSCN connectivity services.

You can also use the new HSCN dynamic purchasing system (DPS) to obtain HSCN connectivity services conveniently and cost-effectively. 

The DPS, known as RM3825, is managed by the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) and provides a simple and efficient way for health and social care organisations to buy HSCN connectivity from a choice of compliant suppliers. 


HSCN customer journey

The HSCN customer journey is a 4 step process, from making contact with a supplier through to connecting to HSCN.

The HSCN customer journey 4 step process: Contact suppliers, fill-in connection agreement, buy HSCN connection, connect to HSCN


1. Contact suppliers

HSCN connectivity is supplied via a marketplace of compliant suppliers (called consumer network service providers or CN-SPs); you can find details of which CN-SPs have achieved compliance, and an explanation of the HSCN compliance process on the Supplying HSCN services page.

Key considerations

  1. As all HSCN CN-SPs connect to one another via a peering exchange, therefore you will still be able to access and share information with everyone else connected to HSCN regardless of when you connect or which supplier you choose.
  2. When buying your HSCN connection we strongly advise you to contact several suppliers so you can ensure value for money on your connection needs.
  3. While not essential, we advise that you use the HSCN Quote Form when asking suppliers to provide pricing, as this enables consistency for comparison. This form was created in collaboration with suppliers to ensure all information required by a CN-SP to provide a HSCN Connection Quote is captured.

2. Complete a Connection Agreement

Every organisation that wants to use HSCN must complete a Connection Agreement.

The HSCN Connection Agreement can be submitted now. You can complete a Connection Agreement at any point before you connect to HSCN, we advise that you do this as soon as possible to make sure you do not face any connection delays.

You'll need to provide the following information to us to complete a Connection Agreement - these details should be submitted by email to enquiries@nhsdigital.nhs.uk:

  1. Organisation name and address - this should match the information held against your organisations ODS code.
  2. ODS code - you can search for your ODS code using the NHS Digital ODS Portal.
  3. Name and email address of HSCN point of contact - this should be the person responsible for completing the Connection Agreement.

Once we have received this information we'll send an invite with registration details by email to the nominated contact details.


3. Buy an HSCN connection

Once you have contacted a number of suppliers, and compared the quotes they have offered, for the type of connection you need, you'll be able to:

  1. Select which supplier you want to buy from.
  2. Let them know when you want your connection to start.

You will not need to confirm these details to NHS Digital as we'll be working with suppliers to make sure we are aware of any new organisations joining HSCN.

For more information read the HSCN Buying Guide.


4. Connect to HSCN

To connect to HSCN you'll need to:

  1. Pick a supplier.
  2. Pick the services you need.
  3. Submit your HSCN Connection Agreement.

Your supplier will provide you with details of any steps you will need to make at the site, or sites, where you'll be connecting to HSCN.

If you would like more information on any of the steps in the customer journey you can contact us at enquiries@nhsdigital.nhs.uk.


Further Details

NHS Business Partners

For organisations who don't have an existing Transition Network connection but are interested in working with NHS organisations as a provider or partner introductory information is available on the NHS Business Partners page.


Further information

internal HSCN supplier information

The Health and Social Care Network (HSCN) is a secure way for health and social care organisations to share information. Some elements of HSCN are delivered centrally by NHS Digital or its partners, and others can be supplied by any organisation which can demonstrate that they comply with the standards.

internal HSCN technical policies and guidance

Guidance, policy and best practice documents covering all technical aspects of HSCN. Documents within these pages will be regularly reviewed and updated by NHS Digital.

Last edited: 22 February 2021 2:35 pm