Discovery is based on the hypothesis that if health related data is brought together at the level of the individual, stored at the level of a medium size residential population, made available via a common information model, and used for individual and population based decision support, great benefits to health can accrue.
Two small examples of the way in which this data can be used include:

  • At an individual level: When an NHS 111 call handler receives a call from a citizen, if a system could analyse the primary and secondary care data in real time, and detect whether they have frailty, alert the call handler that a clinician should be consulted, a dangerous trip to hospital may be avoided.
  • At a population level: Using data from primary care and acute care combined, if a system could determine the small number of people with Asthma who appear to have a profile suggesting that they are at risk of death or prolonged hospitalisation, proactive intervention would save lives.

Disccovery Data Service status

  • The data service is live.
  • It currently stores and processes the data from 28 million linked organisational patient records in the UK.
  • It contains long term records on 14 million unique UK citizens who have been resident in London at some point in the last 30 years (including people who have left or died).
  • Data on individuals are held in a single common data model with data values represented by a super ontology composed of the world's leading health ontologies.
  • Data in Discovery is submitted by health providers who provide primary, secondary, and urgent care services to patients or clients.
  • Data is kept up to date in close to real time - at worst within 24 hours; see Latency of extract data feeds for more details.

See Discovery Data Service for more details.