NICE may consider real-world data when developing future NHS guidance

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (London, UK) has released a statement of intent detailing additional data sources – including electronic health records and other real-world data – that their independent committees may consider in the development of NHS guidance going forward.

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Feb 06, 2020

Following public and stakeholder consultation on its expanded data sources proposal from June–September 2019, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (London, UK) has released a finalized statement of intent concerning its current use of data and plans to expand consideration of various additional data sources in the future development of guidance, which could include real-world data sources such as electronic health records.

Currently, a wide range of evidence is considered and evaluated by NICE when it is developing health technology and best-practice guidance for the NHS, however, this finalized statement of intent recognizes that, going forward, NICE must adapt its protocols of data identification, assessment and interpretation, to incorporate emerging and international data sources, amongst others.

Novel sources of data that NICE plans to expand its use of include data extracted from electronic health records, real-world data concerning extra-clinical trial health and social care practice, and data held by local authorities about public health and social care.

Considering these additional data is hoped to allow for more rapid updating of current recommendations and provide insight on the public impact of guidance, amongst other improvements.

In its finalized statement of intent, NICE stated: “NICE welcomes the opportunity to continue our well-established practice of translating evidence into practical guidance and advice, and to expand our methods and processes to enable more extensive and effective use of broader sources of data.”

“We acknowledge that there are challenges in expanding our use of data and analytics, but we believe that the potential benefits to health and social care providers and users of their services outweigh the risks. We look forward to engaging with other organisations that have expertise in data analytics, to explore areas of shared interest and work together to improve health and social care. We will seek to reduce barriers and set up frameworks to enable this work to succeed,” concluded NICE.

At an upcoming public board meeting in March, NICE is to detail the next steps for progressing this initiative forward.


NICE. Statement of intent. Widening the evidence base: use of broader data and applied analytics in NICE’s work.
[Accessed 06/02/2020]
[Opens as Word document]

Go to the profile of Ilana Landau

Ilana Landau

Assistant Editor, Future Science Group

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