We have been working with the NHS Information Centre and the Renal Registry to get the National Renal Dataset approved as a standard for use across England. The application was approved by the Information Standards Board for Health and Social Care at their meeting on 5 November. Particular thanks must go to Alison Roe (Project Manager for Standards and Classifications at the Information Centre) for steering this and taking it forward.
The Information Standards Board will now issue a Dataset Change Notice (DSCN). This is the formal mechanism that notifies NHS Trusts and their system suppliers of mandatory collections. It will give six months advance notice before collection of the data is required to start from May 2009. I have written to the clinical directors to bring this to the attention of your trust IT department now as there will no doubt be preparatory work for this which needs to start as soon as possible.
The majority of data items being mandated from May 2009 are contained within the current UK Renal Registry and UK Transplant data collections; however there are new items to be gathered which will need systems development.
Details of both the new and existing data items are provided in the dataset specification and guidance documents produced by the NHS Information Centre. These are available to download from the IC website.
This is an exciting development. Kidney Services has the first speciality-wide mandated operational information standard. This will be the basis of our quality metrics recently given so much coverage in the press. Taking into account Trusts, UKRR and UKT, there have been over 120 people outside the Information Centre involved with the project. Just within NHS trusts; from named contacts that we have worked with and people who responded to the consultation, I know of 96 individuals in 36 trusts, of which 54 were clinical staff, 18 Allied Health Professionals, 16 Informatics staff and 8 general managers. I am grateful to Bradford, Bristol, Derby, Exeter, Leeds and Norwich, the demonstration sites who have been able to return the whole dataset.