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Disclosure Review for Health Statistics - Consultation on Guidance


This consultation is now closed.

In using and releasing health statistics there is a risk, generally with small numbers, of identifying individuals. To address this, the Department of Health asked the National Statistician to provide it with guidelines for interpreting the National Statistics Code of Practice and associated protocols in the handling of health statistics across the health community, in a way that balances data confidentiality risks with the public interest in the use of the figures.

The reporting for this Review has been a two-stage process. The first part of the Review focused on developing guidance for published tables of abortion statistics. This report provides more general guidance on disclosure issues around published tables of health statistics. It was drafted with the help of representatives from the Department of Health, Information Centre for Health and Social Care, professionals from Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland and representatives of the users of health statistics. There has been a public consultation and a quality assurance review of this final guidance. The main guidance, associated technical working papers and a summary of the responses received to the consultation are available to download here.

ONS will now begin the process of implementing the recommendations of the Review for their health statistics. ONS will work collaboratively with the Information Centre for Health and Social Care and the Department of Health to support the implementation of the recommendations more widely across England.

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