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Latest news

The latest service alerts and notifications published by the Organisation Data Service.

ODS API Suite (ORD and ODS FHIR APIs) – Archiving Closed Records

Further to the ODS newsletter article of April 2023 regarding the updated archive cut-off date that was applied to the XML products, we now need to reflect that updated cut off in the ORD and ODS FHIR (STU3) APIs. This implementation has been scheduled for 7 August 2023.

Inactive records that were operationally closed between 1 April 2012 (day after previous cut off) and 31 March 2017 inclusive (new cut off), will move into the XML archive file (published via TRUD). This impacts approximately 33,000 records.

The full records of these closed/inactive organisations will no longer be available via the ODS APIs. However, skeleton versions of archived records will remain in the ORD API as required for referential integrity, that is if an active/open code has a closed relationship to the archived record. See section 4.11 of the XML Technical Specification for further information. The STU3 FHIR API does not contain relationship data therefore the presentation of skeleton/reference only records does not apply.

ORD (sync endpoint) and STU3 FHIR users who wish to reflect this updated archive cut off can obtain the latest XML full file from TRUD and use this to re-baseline/refresh local databases. If you have baselined your ODS data using the April, May or June 2023 XML full file then no further action is required – these files reflected the new archive cut-off date.

Any queries, email: [email protected] (use subject line: ODS API Archive Cut Off Change).


ODS API Suite – Withdrawal of legacy data

Legacy Prison Codes – As advised in previous communications, legacy ‘YDE..’ prison codes were closed as they duplicate current/correct prison codes (both RO175 PRISON primary role). To further improve data quality, ODS intend to now withdraw these closed, legacy prison codes from publication. Their records will be withdrawn from the API by 7 August 2023.

Fax Numbers – ODS currently publish fax numbers for a small proportion of records within the ODS API Suite. These fax numbers are not maintained and so should not be relied upon. Therefore, we will be withdrawing these fax numbers from the API by 7 August 2023.

Please raise any queries by emailing [email protected] with a subject line: ODS Legacy Data Withdrawal.


ORD API - Prescribing Cost Centre Relationships

Prescribing Cost Centre codes can have an ‘operated by’ (RE6) relationship as well as an ‘is commissioned by’ (RE4) relationship. At present, the ORD API will only display the ‘is operated by’ relationship if the target organisation is different to the target organisation on the ‘is commissioned by’ relationship. 

Rather than expecting users to assume the ‘is operated by’ relationship, we would like to make this explicit by publishing these relationship details. Therefore, during early August 2023, we will be pushing approximtaely 12,000 ‘is operated by’ relationships for Prescribing Cost Centre codes to the ORD API. Users can expect to see an increase in amended prescribing cost centre records during this time. The ‘Last Change Date’ for impacted records will be updated.

Any queries, email: [email protected] (use subject line: ODS ORD API RE6 relationships).


NHS Postcode Directory (NHS PD) – reduction of file size

With the latest addition of the new Census 2021 data in the NHS PD, comprising of 3 new columns, it is evident that the data has become too large to be managed effectively. To reduce the file size, we would like to remove some legacy content which is now static.  

The content we are currently looking to remove includes:

  • Field 19 - 1991 Census Enumeration District (ED) – PSED
  • Field 20 - 1991 Census Enumeration District (ED) – CENED
  • Field 21 - ED Positional Quality Indicator - EDIND
  • Field 22 – 1998 Ward – WARD98
  • Field 23 – 2001 Census Output Area (OA) – OA01
  • Field 26 – 2001 Lower layer Super Output Area (LSOA) – LSOA01
  • Field 27 – 2001 Census Urban/ Rural Indicator – UR01IND
  • Field 28 – 2001 Census Middle Layer Super Output Area (MSOA) – MSOA01

We are conscious that simply removing the fields entirely would break load routines, as this would change field numbers for all other fields. Therefore, we are proposing not to remove the fields entirely, just the content. This will reduce the file size dramatically but not affect the field positions.

If you have any concerns regarding this proposal. or have any comments / suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact us: [email protected].

Last edited: 12 July 2023 9:29 am