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NHS Digital signs deal to make it easier to share data

healthcare
(Image credit: Image Credit: Photo_Concepts / iStock)

The UK National Health Service (NHS) has signed an agreement with American IT firm DXC Technology and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), with the goal of simplifying data sharing across its various segments.

According to the press releae, the NHS will use CSIRO’s interoperability terminology system, Ontoserver, which will make data sharing faster and mapping clinical and administrative codes between different health and care organizations easier.

According to initial tender documents, the deal is valued at approximately $13.2 million and DXC will serve as a managed service provider.

“Recording data once and then reconciling, comparing and sharing the data safely has been a long-standing challenge across the NHS,” said Nicholas Oughtibridge, Principle Data Architect at NHS Digital.

“Ontoserver has the potential to transform the way in which data is captured, shared and analyzed across health and care. The capabilities that Ontoserver delivers are key to enabling data from disparate systems to be safely and meaningfully exchanged between care providers, researchers and service planners.”

Talking to ZDNet, CSIRO CEO Dr. David Hansen said healthcare organizations often use different software and terminology, which can cause problems.

"Ideally, we like to think everyone speaks the same language, but we know that's not the case," he said.

"There's also a lot of nuances in language as well. Ontoserver will help codify some of those, and some of the extra support we have in Ontoserver is to be able to map between different terminology."