4 October 2023

Digital Technology Guru

Digital Technology Guru Reviews

NHS England’s Federated Data Platform Faces Opposition in Digital Networks Webinar Debate

2 min read
NHS England’s Federated Data Platform Faces Opposition in Digital Networks Webinar Debate

In a recent Digital Networks Webinar debate, NHS England’s proposed Federated Data Platform (FDP) faced significant opposition, resulting in a narrow 51 to 49% no vote. The £480 million project has sparked controversy due to the potential involvement of US data analytics giant Palantir, which has faced criticism for its work with intelligence and security services. Critics have raised concerns about Palantir’s intentions for monetizing the data and its advantage in the bidding process due to prior work with the government during the pandemic.

The debate mainly centered around the effectiveness of the FDP model in enhancing data and analytics capabilities. Supporters highlighted the benefits of data sharing across the NHS and presented successful pilot projects at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital. However, opponents argued that a strong case for the significant financial investment had not been made, and communication with clinicians and the public was lacking.

During the debate, NHS England’s chief data officer, Ming Tang, emphasized that the FDP is a strategic investment to improve data usage in decision-making. By consolidating data from various systems into a single platform, the FDP has the potential to enhance connectivity, resilience, and innovation. Tang addressed concerns about data control, stating that the platform would operate with open architecture, and data ownership would remain with the NHS. She also highlighted the value for money and plans for investments in training and implementation.

On the opposing side, a consultant clinical scientist and head of the Clinical Scientific Computing section at Guy’s and St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust expressed skepticism about the project. He acknowledged the benefits of national commissioning and data coordination but raised concerns about the complexity of data management and the lack of prior stakeholder engagement.

The debate also featured insights from representatives of Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, where pilot projects have shown positive results. They emphasized the need for standardizing pathway management and tailored tools for healthcare professionals.

The outcome of the debate indicates that more work needs to be done to address concerns and ensure the effectiveness of the FDP. Evaluation of alternative approaches and better communication with stakeholders are essential. The FDP will need careful implementation to succeed and benefit the NHS system and its workforce.

– “NHS England’s Federated Data Platform blasted in Digital Networks webinar debate” – DigitalHealth, https://www.digitalhealth.net/2021/09/nhs-england-federated-data-platform-blasted-webinar-debate/
– “NHS England’s Federated Data Platform under scrutiny in Webinar debate” – Digital Health News, https://www.digitalhealthnews.eu/industry/6489-nhs-england-s-federated-data-platform-under-scrutiny-in-webinar-debate