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Derby and Derbyshire ICB Risk Stratification

Why We Process Your Information

Risk stratification is a process for identifying and caring for patients with long term health conditions and patients who are at high risk of emergency hospital admission. NHS England encourages ICBs and GPs to use risk stratification tools as part of their local strategies for supporting patients with long-term conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and diabetes, to help prevent hospital admissions that could have been avoided. As well as helping GP Practices to provide Direct Care support, risk stratification is used by the ICB to support planning and commissioning, for example, understanding the numbers of patients in the region who require services to support COPD will enable us to commission the right services to better manage periods of ill health and to improve the quality of the services we are able to offer you. 

We Will Use

Different types of data as organisations within or contracted to the NHS have different lawful bases for processing personal data.

Identifiable data – when disclosed from GP Practices and NHS Digital to a Risk Stratification supplier

Aggregated – the ICB can only receive this information in format which cannot identify you.

Pseudonymised – GPs are provided with pseudonymised data for risk stratification planning purposes, however, where a direct care impact is identified on a patient through the process the GP will be able to re-identify the patient concerned.

Risk stratification tools use a mix of historic information about patients such as age, gender, diagnoses and patterns of hospital attendance and admission as well as data collected in GP practices.

NHS England (formerly NHS Digital) provides information, identifiable by your NHS Number only, about hospital attendances. GP Practices provide information from GP records also identifiable by your NHS Number only.  Both sets of information are sent via secure transfer to the risk stratification system where they are immediately pseudonymised and linked to each other. The risk stratification system uses a formula to analyse the pseudonymised data to produce a risk score. These risk scores are available to the GP practice you are registered with where authorised staff who are responsible for providing direct care for you are able to see these scores in a format that identifies you. This will help the clinical team make better decisions about your future care, for example you may be invited in for a review or if they think you may benefit from a referral to a new service they will discuss this with you.  The ICB is provided with reports containing aggregate information, which do not identify you, to ensure we are commissioning and planning for these services as required by the population we serve. 

Legal Basis for Processing your Data

Personal data which is processed for the purposes of risk stratification:


6(1)(e)processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller;

Processing of Special Categories of Data

9(2)(h)processing is necessary for the purposes of preventive or occupational medicine, for the assessment of the working capacity of the employee, medical diagnosis, the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services on the basis of Union or Member State law or pursuant to contract with a health professional and subject to the conditions and safeguards referred to in paragraph 3.

Common Law Duty of Confidentiality

The use of identifiable data for risk stratification has been approved by the Secretary of State, through the Confidentiality Advisory Group of the Health Research Authority (known as Section 251 approval under the Health Services (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002, under section 251 of the NHS Act 2006).

Further information on Section 251 can be obtained by clicking here.  The reference number for the risk stratification approval is CAG7-04(a)/2013.  This approval allows your GP or staff within your GP Practice who are responsible for providing your care, to see information that identifies you, but the ICB staff will only be able to see information in a format that does not reveal your identity.

Data Processing Activities

On behalf of its GP Practices, Derby and Derbyshire ICB have entered into a contract with North of England Commissioning Support as their Risk Stratification Supplier to produce the analysis as above.

Opt out details

Your GP practice can apply a code which will stop your identifiable information being used for Risk Stratification purposes. Additional information is also available from the NHS England website:

Last Updated: Wednesday 17th January 2024 - 12:28:pm

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