The Health and Social Care Information Centre is establishing a Caldicott Implementation Monitoring Group to begin work in 2014.

One of its key tasks will be to, “help bust myths and anxieties that have grown up around the use of personal confidential data to support commissioning," said HSCIC clinical advisor Dr Alan Hassey.

“We will be working with NHS England and commissioners to find answers for risk stratification, and invoice validation, and a solution for the establishing of accredited safe havens," he added, when asked to comment on the impact of Caldicott2 for an EHI Primary Care feature looking ahead at the key issues for 2014.

Primary care trusts had a section 251 exemption from the NHS Act 2006 to process PCD, but this was not automatically transferred to their successors, clinical commissioning groups and commissioning support units, when they came into being in April 2013.

Initially, this looked like an oversight. But when Dame Fiona Caldicott’s second review of information governance and the Department of Health’s response to it were issued, it became clear that the government was determined to tighten up the rules on using patient identifiable information for administration.

Clinical commissioners wrote to NHS England in mid-2013 saying they could not carry out key commissioning functions such as invoice validation and risk stratification, because of the new rules restricting their access to PCD.

But the government held the line, issuing new guidance at the end of the year that insisted most functions could be carried out without such data, while setting out complex rules for handling any PCD ‘necessary’ for invoice validation and other tasks.

Dame Fiona Caldicott has also contributed to the Insight feature. In a separate project from that being established by the HSCIC, Dame Fiona has convened an independent panel to “scrutinise and challenge” progress regarding the 26 recommendations made in her review.

“I anticipate that my new panel, the Independent Information Governance Oversight Panel, will be able to facilitate the improved use of people’s information for their care, especially at interfaces in clinical pathways, but also for research, enabling patients to participate in that when they wish,” she said.

Read our experts’ predictions for the five themes that are likely to dominate primary care and commissioning in the coming year in Insight.