Extending access to the Model Hospital to support systems working

The Model Hospital is a digital information product designed to help drive improvements in the NHS. The Long Term Plan recognises the success of the Model Hospital to date and the potential of this becoming the Model Health System to support requirements for system-wide improvements.

The focus is now moving from improvement within trusts, to extend to supporting systems working and therefore a first step is to increase and improve data transparency, making the data and metrics more widely available to NHS colleagues working within systems.

Who will have extended access

  • All existing users within provider organisations will have access to other provider trusts within their STP/ICS footprint. This means you will be able to switch to a provider who is in your STP and see data relating to that provider.
  • Access will be available to other NHS staff working within systems to view information for all providers within their system footprint, specifically CCGs and CSUs.
  • Access will be extended to all Arm’s Length Bodies - users will be able to access information for any provider


  • To ensure all providers and commissioners within a health system are able to see each other’s data to take a system approach to driving forward operational and ‘system’ level improvements in quality, efficiency and productivity of patients who use the NHS.
  • To support collaborative working together of all system partners to improve outcomes and make best use of resources available to them in the context of place-based care. The Model Hospital offers very significant insight into these opportunities which we would envisage becoming a key component of discussions within STPs.
  • Opening up access to show all data across an STP group for the purpose of driving improvements in the NHS ties in with transparency requirements in the Long Term Plan for systems to work closer together and the ambition for all areas to become ICS by 2021.
  • Providing a system/STP view of data will help systems in meeting the requirements as set out in the NHSI/E Operational Planning Guidance which requires systems to work together and provide a narrative of planning across of system.
  • Adding new ALBs will ensure these organisations can use Model Hospital to support improvements in our NHS. Additionally, it supports NHSE/I’s collaborative working responsibilities and joint working improvement programmes with other ALBs and reduces duplication of effort.
  • User research has confirmed that sharing of information across the NHS is viewed as a positive development providing it is used under agreed terms and for the purpose of quality and productivity improvement.

Information governance

As a provider of the data collected from various data collections by NHSI/E which has been used to develop metrics in the Model Hospital it is important to highlight to your metrics will now be available as listed above. Please note the inclusion of commissioning organisations which were not in scope of the original IG data collection notices issued as part of the various data collection exercises over the last few years.

All users will be subject to acceptance of an updated terms of use to reflect the changes and provide necessary assurances relating to wider access. The purpose of using Model Hospital data will move from being provider focused to use information on the Portal for supporting operational and ‘system’ level improvements in quality, efficiency and productivity of patients who use the NHS (‘the Purpose’). Use of data in the Model Hospital will still be excluded for areas such as performance management or for commercial purposes.

Systems/STPs should already have local data sharing arrangements/protocols in place for system working, and to add an additional layer of assurance it is recommended (if not already done so) for reference to be made in these protocols to using data sourced from the Model Hospital to support system improvements. This would outline in more detail the different ways locally Model Hospital data will be used to supporting operational and ‘system’ level improvements in quality, efficiency and productivity of patients who use the NHS, aligning this purpose with your existing local governance, systems and processes already in place.

Developing the Model Health System

Extending access to the Model Hospital is a key first step in delivering the Model Health System which will provide:

  • An aggregate view of data and metrics across the STP.
  • Data from organisations across the NHS, including CCGs
  • New features, based on user demand, extending beyond information benchmarking towards sharing of expertise and case-studies.

In some areas we have provisioned access for CCG staff (who tend to lead some of the STP improvement programmes), where provider executives have explicitly granted the permission to share data and access the Model Hospital. This access for CCG colleagues working within a system is now being extended by default without the need for express written permission. .

This a hugely positive step forward, in the development of the Model Health System, specifically facilitating improvement across systems.

If you do have any concerns or queries, please email access@model.nhs.uk.

Background context

Over the last three years the Model Hospital has grown to become a core part of the improvement and transformation programmes of trusts across the NHS. Recognising that success, the NHS Long Term Plan (LTP) made two key commitments that rely wholly or in part on building on the success of the Model Hospital to date:

  1. Develop a ‘Model Health System’ bringing together data from providers, commissioners and public health across a locality.
  2. Increase and improve transparency by making more of our work freely available where possible.

To support our LTP commitment to improve transparency and support systems we have conducted user-research and tested design prototypes. Our programme of user-research consisted of surveys, interviews, focus-groups and co-design workshops, with the aims to:

  • Understand the views of Model Hospital users within NHS Trusts on data transparency, specifically understanding which audiences and data types users would be most comfortable to share, or if there are any significant concerns or blockers
  • Identify some potential options to facilitate the sharing of Model Hospital data and determine which options could be best for different data sharing requirements

There is a broad consensus that the sharing of information from the Model Hospital, across the NHS, is positive and supported by existing users for explicit purposes and with the right controls on using data. There are concerns around misinterpretation of some datasets and the potential sensitivity of some data assets if sharing would be extended to groups beyond the NHS. However, for the purposes of supporting the LTP policy, there is support to extend access to CCGs and across all providers.

It has been decided to extend access across the NHS to support systems working in the first instance. Additional reviews on data license permissions is ongoing. We also intend to release data on the NHS England Data Catalogue alongside methodologies to improve public transparency. Our help, guidance and support site is openly available at http://feedback.model.nhs.uk

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