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Community Health Activity Data

Health and Social Care

NHS National Services Scotland ISD Scotland & NHS National Services Scotland

Community Health Activity Data

With an annual community spend of £1.8 billion in 2014/15, the development of a robust community health activity and cost dataset is crucial. NHS Boards who have begun to implement the recording of community based activity and costs, have demonstrated improvements in delivery of care, workforce planning and efficiency and effectiveness of services. A project to develop this dataset is now underway at ISD.


It is widely recognised that community health data has for some time been underdeveloped compared to the detailed acute and hospital based health data that exists for NHS Scotland.

The move towards the Integration of Health & Social Care has further highlighted the need for robust community data. The Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Act 2014 requires Health Boards and Local Authorities to put in place integrated governance arrangements for adult health and social care. A key remit of the newly integrated Health & Social Care Partnerships is to oversee the development and delivery of joint strategic commissioning plans.

An effective strategic plan will require a robust evidence base to enable good local understanding of activity and resource use across health and social care, and to support service planning that is in line with local priorities.

The Health and Social Care Management Board of the Scottish Government has highlighted the development of a community health activity and cost dataset as a key development project for NHSScotland. The Technical Advisory Group for Resource Allocation (TAGRA) is responsible for the maintenance and on-going development of the National Resource Allocation Committee (NRAC) formula. TAGRA have recommended that the Information Services Division (ISD) should "oversee the delivery of a reliable national dataset for community activity and costs".

The project to deliver this is now underway and will be rolled out by specialty.

At all stages in this project we will seek to minimise data collection by using and enhancing existing sources of data and technology.

District Nursing Team Activity

A District Nursing Team activity and cost dataset will contribute to improving the health of the population through consistent gathering of information. It will also enable more efficient workforce planning. This will help and support a successful patient care pathway experience.

The dataset will:

  • describe District Nursing Team Activity;
  • inform costing at patient level;
  • support allocation needs;
  • use data which is already available; and
  • provide a foundation for future community datasets.

This dataset went live on the 1st April 2015. For further information please go to the District Nursing page.

Community Mental Health

A Mental Health Team activity and cost dataset will contribute to improving the heath of the population through consistent gathering of multi-disciplinary and integrated information. It will include information for both NHS and non-NHS care.

All community mental health data, with the exception of Addictions, CAMHS and Learning Disabilities, should be included. This includes Primary Care Mental Health Teams, Community Mental Health Teams and specialist teams such as Forensic Community Teams and Esteem Teams etc.

A consultation on the draft Mental Health dataset was held between December 2015 and January 2016. All responses received were considered and as a result of the process a number of amendments were made to the dataset. The consultation response document can be accessed here.

The dataset definitions document can be accessed here.

Following this consultation, the nationally agreed core dataset will be rolled out to all Health Boards. From 1st April 2016, the expectation will be that the first quarter's data i.e. April to June 2016 will be submitted by mid July 2016.

Health Visiting

The next phase of the Community Health Activity Data project will look at Health Visitor data. The Consultation for this dataset has been sent to each NHS Board to review and the deadline is Wednesday 31st August 2016.

Should you wish to take part in this consultation or seek further information on the Health Visiting dataset then please speak with your Director of Nursing in the first instance or contact the Community Health team at


If you would like further information about this project please contact:

Margaret Parsons
Project Lead
Tel: 0131 275 6528

Community Health Activity Data Project Team


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NHS National Services Scotland,
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