Health Data Research UK has launched a new opportunity for organisations to improve patient care through analysing large-scale data.

The work will include up to four projects and a new partnership that will integrate with Health Data Research UK’s (HDRUK) existing research programmes.

The Better Care Partnership was established to lead a new data science initiative, which could receive up to £1.2 million in funding.

Initially funded for three years, it will use continuous improvement methods to integrate clinical practice, large scale health data and advanced analytics to deliver insights for improving care for patients across the UK.

In addition, HDRUK will also support one year Catalyst Projects to demonstrate how patient care can be improved through data-driven health and care decision.

The organisation is teaming up with the Health Foundation to support the projects, which could each receive up to £200,000.

Professor Simon Ball, medical director at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust and national lead for Health Data Research UK’s Better Care priority, said: “As healthcare professionals we make hundreds of decisions a week with our patients. In doing so we aim to decide what will work best for each individual.

“Electronic healthcare records offer the opportunity to combine patients’ data with information on best practice, so that we can reliably deliver high quality care in complex settings and pressured environments.

“Beyond that we can use the resulting data on patients’ outcomes and experience, to continuously learn from, and improve on, everyday practice in ways that are applicable across the NHS.”

Organisations putting forward partnership or project ideas will be expected to demonstrate how they plan to listen to patients and understand their wishes about how their health data will be used.

They will also be expected to show how patients will be involved at all stages. The aim is to use health data responsibly and ethically with a clear focus on improving patient care.

The UK has vast and rich data about people’s health and care, however this is often not available quickly for clinicians or patients to access to support their decision making, according to HDRUK.

This causes delays and, in some cases, prevents the data from being analysed to deliver better care and improve people’s health.  Both the Catalyst Projects and the Better Care Partnership, which will start in May 2020, aim to help address some of these issues.

The closing date for applying for the Catalyst and Better Care Partnership is 11 March, 2020 at 4pm.