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Services provided by the Organisation Data Service

The Organisation Data Service provides a number of services, including authentication for some Open Exeter services, code allocation and updating and maintaining the registers for Caldicott Guardians, Senior Information Risk Owners and Information Asset Owners.


To ensure secure user access into Systems and Service Delivery (SSD) systems we process Data User Certificates (DUCs), submitted by Senior Risk Information Owners (SIRO) and Information Asset Owners (IAOs) for nominated user access.

Once appropriate sign-off is verified, we create user accounts on the Open Exeter system.

We process DUCs for:

To remove a user's access, a revocation form must be sent from your SIRO.

Who the service is for

Users that require access to SSD systems via the Open Exeter system.

How to use the service

Complete the appropriate DUC and get sign off from your organisation's SIRO. Completed DUC forms should be sent by the SIRO from their own email address to, unless the form says differently.

Code allocation, amendments and closures

An ODS code is a unique identifier allocated to an organisation and their sites. We issue codes to organisations that interact with the Health and Social Care sector and that need access to national IT systems or services.

We allocate codes for:

  • Independent Sector Healthcare Providers (ISHP)
  • NHS organisations
  • Non-NHS organisations
  • optical organisations 
  • private dental practices
  • system suppliers

Codes are valid on creation and we also publish the codes in a series of files in data downloads and TRUD products. Amendments and the closure of codes follows the same process.

Who the service is for

Existing NHS organisations and Independent Sector Healthcare Providers (ISHP) have a named contact (OC1). This contact is responsible for:

  • amending organisation name (if not governed by a Statutory Instrument)
  • amending organisation address details
  • additional site codes requests
  • code closures
  • additional Organisation Contacts (OC1) (max. 3 people per organisation)

How to use the service

If your organisation has an OC1, please contact them. If you're unsure if you have an OC1 in place, or who your OC1 is, raise a call for the ODS Team with the

OC1 guidance on how to request a code.

Non-NHS Organisations will need to complete  the Organisation Code Request Form and send it to the ODS Team at

You can now log and monitor your own calls on the Cherwell Self Service Portal. To register contact or call 0300 3034034.

Data Downloads

ODS publish organisation and some healthcare professional codes, which are made available to ODS customers via downloadable files for varying use cases. Only legacy CSV files are available via the Data Downloads product (due for retirement in 2021). Find out more about data downloads.

Data queries

We publish organisation data available to download in XML.

Data on organisations and healthcare professionals is also currently available in legacy CSV files, for existing data consumers who have not changed over to XML (these files will retire in 2021). New data users should adopt XML in the first instance.

We publish data under Open Government Licence (OGL), which is accessible to any interested party or member of the public. Examples of the types of queries:

  • parliamentary questions
  • Freedom of Information (FOI) requests
  • historical NHS hierarchical information
  • research / academia related requests
  • assistance to system / data suppliers

Who the service is for

Anyone who has an query about the data files we publish. Enquiries can include data we does not currently publish and its feasibility for publication in future.

How to use the service

Raise a call for the ODS Team with at

You can now log and monitor your own calls on the Cherwell Self Service Portal. To register contact or call 0300 3034034.


Download forms, including abeyance and dispersal, consultant template and the ODS organisation contact form (OC1).

Loading consultant and GP information to the Spine


We load General Medical Council (GMC) codes against doctors' smartcards at the person node level of the Spine Directory Service (SDS). This allows functionality in Spine based systems, such as the named clinician functionality on the NHS e-Referral Service (e-RS).

Who the service is for

Registration Authorities working on behalf of a trust.

How to use the service

Complete the SDS consultant template request and send to the ODS team at

You can now log and monitor your own calls on the Cherwell Self Service Portal. To register contact or call 0300 3034034.


We load General National Codes (GNC) against a GP's smartcard at the person node level of the Spine Directory Service (SDS). This allows functionality within Spine based systems, such as GP2GP, Electronic Prescription Services (EPS).  We routinely run processes to confirm and load this data. However we also action ad hoc requests to load GNC's against the Spine.

Who the service is for

Primary Care Registration Authorities.

How to use the service

Raise a call for the ODS Team with the

You can now log and monitor your own calls on the Cherwell Self Service Portal. To register contact or call 0300 3034034.


The ODS API Suite has been designed for organisations and developers to access ODS information on health and social care organisations.

The ODS portal

The ODS portal is a quick and easy way to search organisation details.

Organisation Spine upload

We're responsible for ongoing maintenance of organisations (and their sites) on the Spine Directory Service. Data transfers from our internal database - OSCAR (Organisations Standards Codes and References) to the Spine.

When we issue a code and publish on OSCAR, it updates the Spine in real time and the code is active here immediately.

A presence on Spine does not provide an organisation with automatic access to Spine based systems and applications. Access control mechanisms are in place for different applications. You'll need to contact the particular IT system(s) to ask about your organisation's access.

Who the service is for

NHS organisations or an organisation commissioned by Health and Social Care to provide a service. If you have an active organisation code, your organisation will already be present on Spine. If you do not have an active ODS code see code allocation, amendment and closures (above) for further information.

There are a minority of organisation (or reference) types not available on Spine, normally due to Spine-connected systems not having a need for the data.

How to use the service

Use it to check your organisation is on Spine. If you're a system or service requiring a dataset to be loaded to Spine, which is not currently present please contact

You can now log and monitor your own calls on the Cherwell Self Service Portal. To register contact or call 0300 3034034.


This is a series of business processes that occur when there's a change in organisational control, usually after a merger, acquisition, or change in organisation status. We can offer guidance on:

  • bulk RA re-parenting
  • end point checks
  • ODS code changes
  • realignment of Spine services
  • RA parent changes
  • smartcard user reports

Who the service is for

Any organisation that is going through a change of control as part of a merger, split or change of organisation status.

How to use the service

See our guidance about changes in 2019.

Raise a call for the ODS Team with the

You can now log and monitor your own calls on the Cherwell Self Service Portal. To register contact or call 0300 3034034.

Registration Authority (RA) hierarchies

We maintain RA hierarchies on the Care Identity Service (CIS) by adding or amending the RA parent of an organisation.

CIS is an identity management system, hosted by NHS Digital. This operates user authentication and access control services for Spine applications and support Information Governance (IG) policy.

Who the service is for

RA Managers who need their organisation to be RA parented or RA parenting another organisation.

How to use the service

Use an RA08 form to create or amend an RA Parent.

Submit the form to Access Control, they will check the details and pass to us. You will need to liaise with the Access Control team in the first instance.


Register and directory updates

We maintain and publish the Caldicott Guardian, Senior Information Risk Owner, Information Asset Owner registers and Safe Haven Directory. Register information is available on the ODS Portal twenty four hours after it has been updated by the ODS Support Team.

Caldicott Guardian and SIRO forms can only be submitted by the authorised signatory.

Organisation Authorised Signatory
CCG Chief Operating Officer/Chief Accountable Officer
CSU NHSCB Caldicott Guardian / NHSCB Board member
Executive Agency Chief Executive
GP Practice Senior Partner / Practice Manager
NHS Commissioning Board Chief Executive
NHS Trust Chief Executive
Non NHS Chief Executive / Director (or equivalent)
Region Geography NHSCB Caldicott Guardian / NHSCB Board member

Caldicott Guardian

A Caldicott Guardian is a senior person responsible for protecting the confidentiality of people's health and care information and making sure it is used properly.

All NHS organisations and local authorities providing social services must have a Caldicott Guardian. 

Note: ODS do not hold information for Caldicott Guardians in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Isle of Man or Channel Islands. These are maintained by separate organisations.

Download the Caldicott Guardian register published 23 August 2019
To register your organisation's Caldicott Guardian, please complete this form

Senior Information Risk Owners 

A Senior Information Risk Owner (SIRO) is an Executive Director or member of the Senior Management Board of an organisation with overall responsibility for an organisation's information risk policy.

The SIRO is accountable and responsible for information risk across the organisation. They ensure that everyone is aware of their personal responsibility to exercise good judgement, and to safeguard and share information appropriately.

A SIRO is responsible for user access into Systems and Service Delivery (SSD) systems and this is done by submitting a Data User Certificate (DUC) via the Exeter helpdesk at The ODS Team will process the form, when sign off has been verified, and set up the user account on the Open Exeter system.  There is only one registered SIRO per organisation, however they can delegate responsibility of user access sign-off to a Deputy SIRO or an Information Asset Owner (IAO).  A Deputy SIRO should only be used when the nominated SIRO is absent and the application is urgent.

Download the SIRO register published 23 August 2019
To register your organisation's SIRO, please complete this form

Information Asset Owner

The Information Asset Owner (IAO) will be a senior member of staff who is the nominated owner for one or more identified information assets of the organisation. IAOs will support the organisation's SIRO in their overall information risk management function as defined in the organisation's policy. 

The IAO nomination form must be sent by the registered SIRO from the SIRO's email account. There is no limit to the number of IAO's a SIRO can nominate within their organisation.

Download the IAO register published 23 August 2019
To nominate an IAO, please complete this form

Safe Haven Directory

Safe Havens have been set up in the NHS to ensure that confidential patient data can be transmitted and stored securely. Get the latest Safe Haven downloads.

XML Organisation Data Products

XML data is the replacement for CSV files which will be removed from publication in 2021 as part of the Organisation Reference Data Changes (ORD Changes) project. XML data for use in live systems is released on a monthly basis via TRUD. Find out more about XML Organisation Data products.

Last edited: 23 August 2019 2:49 pm