NHS IT, Records and Data

09.03.20

NHSBSA set to launch open-source data portal

NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) have announced they will launch their Open Data Portal (ODP) by the end of March 2020, providing everyone from NHS commissioners to the public easy access to data.

Developing the NHSBSA Open Data Portal using ‘CKAN’ – itself an open-source platform for data sharing originally developed by non-profit Open Knowledge International – the new portal will allow easier access to some of the wealth of valuable data created from the £36bn of NHS activity administered by NHSBSA.

Much of that data comes from primary care prescriptions, which NHSBSA administers.

The first dataset which will be made available in the new Open Data Portal is prescribing information for GP Practices and Cost Centres in England. This is a new dataset which combines two previous releases: Detailed Prescribing Information (DPI), released by the NHSBSA, and the Practice Level Prescribing in England (PLP), previously released by NHS Digital.

The new portal will also provide an application programming interface (API), allowing users to make queries on the data through software of their choice, increasing opportunities for people to use and reuse the data available to them.

Although NHSBSA has been working to make more data accessible, patient confidentiality will be protected and details will be kept secure.

Darren Curry, Chief Digital Officer at NHSBSA said: “We’re committed to making data open and the launch of our new Open Data portal, developed using Open Source software, is an important first step on this journey.

“We recognise that through greater transparency and making more of our data open, we can inspire choice and increase accountability. We strive to make more of our data open, encourage use, and re-use while protecting the confidentiality of patients by keeping their data secure.

“The more data that we make available, the more we can help the wider health service. Our new Open Data Portal will allow data to be more easily compared, contrasted and challenged. We hope that it will help to provide new insights.”

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