Public consultation by NHS Digital on aligning the publication days of official statistics

Closed 16 Feb 2018

Opened 4 Jan 2018

Feedback Updated 17 Apr 2018

We Asked

We asked for your support in deciding whether to rationalise the days on which we publish official statistics or to continue to publish as we do now on every week day except Mondays or the days that follow a public holiday.

You Said

Fifty-nine per cent of you supported a change to publish on either one (34%) or two (25%) days of the week, whereas 41% voted for no change. Those responses supporting a reduction in the number of days we publish during the week, most commonly cited “Ease of access”, “Staff pressures and “Coherence” as reasons. Those who favoured no change most highlighted “Ease of access”, “Timeliness” and “Wider visibility” as reasons in support of their position, all of which we have taken into consideration in our new release strategy.

You highlighted the following broad reasons, which are listed in the order of the frequency they were raised:

  1. Ease of access (if all publications are released on one or the same day each week some responded it would make anticipating release days easier, while others responded it would decrease visibility if multiple important but unrelated publications came out on the same day)
  2. Staff pressures (for those requiring data from NHS Digital to perform their own analysis, some highlighted fewer release days would make planning and structuring work patterns simpler, while others highlighted an increase in workload on publication days)
  3. Timeliness (some were concerned that a rationalisation of dates would cause delays to the availability of statistics)
  4. Coherence (some users highlighted that similar themed publications released together is helpful, including when coordinated across multiple statistics producers)
  5. Wider visibility (some highlighted that releasing publications on the same day could diminish the visibility of some through media and other channels if on unrelated themes)

Therefore, we will take several measures to address these concerns as detailed in the We Did section.

We Did

From June 2018 we will wherever possible consolidate publications on a specific topic on a single day (theme day) and provide a high-level overview of the findings alongside the individual publications. This should improve coherence of releases.

Most publications will be released on Thursday and we plan to develop a web page giving an overview of each Thursday’s releases improving ease of access. We expect some publications to speed up and some to slow down by potentially a couple of days. Exceptions to the Thursday release pattern will be made for very rapid turn-around publications to preserve their timeliness; particularly congested periods where our most substantial reports may be released on other days to ensure wider visibility; and reports that are aligned to other days due to the significance of that particular date or external related releases on that date to ensure coherence.

We will review how well this is achieving its objectives after a few months of implementation and make any further adjustments in line with user feedback.

Overview

NHS Digital produces around 300 statistical publications a year. These draw on survey data, administrative data, data from clinical systems and aggregate collections. To meet the specific needs of our users, they cover diverse areas including population health, NHS activity, social care, performance, outcomes, workforce and resources.

Our users include individual local NHS organisations, Local Authorities, charities, the Department of Health and its Arm’s Length Bodies, academia, the media and the public.

The statistical publications are subject to a range of time lags considering the type of data, the ability of organisations to submit the data, and the level of manual intervention needed when generating publications.

Some are rapid, automated monthly releases; others large annual reports.

NHS Digital’s statistical publications are currently released on any working day of the week except Monday, public holidays and days that follow public holidays.

Why We Are Consulting

This consultation will support NHS Digital in deciding whether to rationalise the days on which it publishes official statistics or continue to publish as it does now.

This engagement with users ensures that we are following best practice on the principle of the Code of Practice for Official Statistics 2009 around: “Publish statistical reports according to a published timetable that takes account of user needs.”

All responses collected will be treated confidentially in line with the Data Protection act, personal details of respondents will not be associated with any published results of the survey or shared with anyone outside of NHS Digital.

When we consider the results, greater weight will be given to external users and to those who identify themselves or the organisation they are submitting on behalf of.

The consultation should take between 5 and 10 minutes to complete.

What Happens Next

The responses to this consultation will be analysed and a preferred option will be adopted by NHS Digital in the new financial year.

Areas

  • All Areas

Audiences

  • GP Practice Managers
  • Clinicians
  • Managers
  • Commissioners
  • IG Specialists
  • IG Administrators
  • IT Specialists
  • Internal Audit Representatives
  • Dental Managers
  • Pharmacy Managers
  • SHA Cluster IG Managers
  • PCT Cluster IG Managers
  • Patients
  • Carers
  • Members of the Public
  • Local Authority IG Managers
  • Social Care Providers
  • Public Health Organisations
  • Informatics Specialists
  • Auditors
  • Academia/Research
  • Prison Health
  • Hosted Secondary Use Teams
  • NHS Business Partners
  • Commercial Third Parties
  • Qualified Providers - Clinical
  • Qualified Providers - Non Clinical
  • Community Pharmacies
  • CIOs
  • Finance Managers
  • Health IT System Suppliers
  • Laboratory Staff
  • Pathology Staff
  • Laboratory Medicine Staff
  • Trust/Practice IT Staff
  • Senior Information Risk Owners
  • 111/999 Call Handlers
  • Clinicians
  • Customers of the South Devon NHS Service Desk
  • Heads of Information
  • Information Managers
  • IT Quality Assurance Managers
  • Data Quality Managers
  • TRUD SNOMED CT Subscribers
  • Clinical Coding Professionals
  • Clinical Coding Auditors
  • Coding, Finance & Information Managers
  • TRUD NICIP Subscribers
  • Health Care Resource Groups (HRG) Users
  • National Caesmix Office
  • Registered Users of Submission Portal
  • Acute Non Foundation Trusts
  • Acute Foundation Trusts
  • Care Non Foundation Trusts
  • Care Foundation Trusts
  • Ambulance Non Foundation Trusts
  • Ambulance Foundation Trusts
  • Mental Health Non Foundation Trusts
  • Mental Health Foundation Trusts
  • GP Practices
  • Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs)
  • Dentists
  • Special Health Authority (SpHA)
  • Independent and Voluntary Sector
  • NHS Care Homes
  • NHS Commissioning Board
  • Trust Development Authority
  • Arms Length Bodies
  • Commissioning Support Units (CSU)
  • NHS Commissioning Board
  • NHS England
  • NHS England - Local Area Teams
  • Social Enterprises
  • Hospices
  • Specialist Palliative Care Services
  • Eye Care Services
  • BAAS Customers
  • Local authorities
  • Clinical Commissioning Groups
  • Acute Care
  • Community Care
  • Secondary Care
  • Ambulance Services
  • Out of Hours Services
  • Social Care
  • Secondary Use Organisations
  • Voluntary Sector Organisations
  • All Secondary Healthcare Providers
  • NHS England Commissioning Teams
  • All Users
  • All Users of This Statistical Information
  • Cancer Services
  • All Users of the Commissioning Data Sets
  • All Users of National Data Sets
  • Acute Non Foundation Trusts
  • Acute Foundation Trusts
  • Care Non Foundation Trusts
  • Care Foundation Trusts
  • Mental Health Non Foundation Trusts
  • Mental Health Foundation Trusts
  • GP Practices
  • Independent and Voluntary Sector
  • IT System suppliers
  • Private Health care provider
  • Information Teams
  • Clinicians
  • Data Consumers
  • System Suppliers
  • Event attendees
  • NHS Digital Staff
  • Other NHS Organisations
  • All NHS organisations
  • Heads of Profession
  • Career Managers
  • Lorenzo CoP
  • NHS Trusts
  • Community pharmacies
  • Junior doctors
  • Senior ICT mangers
  • EPS stakeholders
  • ODS - Stakeholders
  • ODS - Organisation Contacts (OC1s)
  • Pharmacists
  • Pharmacy technicians
  • Subject Matter Experts
  • South Devon NHS Service Desk customers
  • SSD National Helpdesk Exeter
  • SSD National Service Desk

Interests

  • Information Governance
  • Audit
  • Information Technology
  • Governance
  • Information Security
  • Informatics
  • Commissioning
  • Regulation
  • Confidential Information
  • Workforce
  • Data Dissemination
  • Data Releases
  • Interoperability
  • Information Standards
  • Clinical Systems
  • Clinical Messaging
  • Information Sharing
  • Information Standards
  • Data Set Change Notices
  • Data Collections
  • Commissioning Data Sets
  • SNOMED CT
  • Terminology
  • Pharmacy
  • Classifications
  • Clinical Coding
  • NICIP
  • Read Codes
  • ICD-10
  • Prescribing
  • Clinical Systems
  • Clinical Messaging
  • dm+d
  • ePrescribing
  • Clinical Terminology
  • Accident and Emergency
  • Administration & Clerical
  • Ambulance
  • Cancer services
  • Care of the Elderly
  • Clinical Governance
  • Community Care
  • Dentistry & Orthodontics
  • Estates & Facilities
  • Finance
  • General Practice
  • Genito-urinary Medicine
  • Hospital Inpatient and Outpatient Care
  • Human Resources / Workforce
  • Informatics
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  • Maternity services
  • Mental Health
  • Performance
  • Pharmacy
  • Primary Care
  • Prison Health
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