Focus on the workstreams: data

Understanding and using available data to drive insight and change

Dr David Rog, consultant neurologist at Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust is the representative on the national ‘Raising the bar’ steering group and lead for this workstream.He will be joined by Hassan Chaudhury (Chief Commercial Officer, Health iQ) to co-chair the workstream meeting.


  • To provide you with an overview of what data is already available to assess your service
  • How you can use this data to make a case for expanding, reconfiguring or changing your MS service to address the objectives of this initiative.

Why this workstream?

At ‘the Way Forward’ we heard from a number of eminent speakers on the collection and use of data, from Blueteq, presented by Malcolm Qualie, to Hospital Episodic Statistics (HES) data currently being gathered and presented through the Getting it Right First Time (GIRFT) programme, outlined on the day by Dr Geraint Fuller.There was plenty of discussion from the floor around the challenges with the current data being gathered, including its limitations, complexities, and the vast variety of different - and disparate - data being gathered across the UK by different agencies. There was also undisputed evidence that ‘we [the UK] lag well behind any other developed country’ in our effective gathering and use of data, as Professor Robertson noted.The overwhelming view during the course of the event was that gathering a succinct and consistent set of data for MS which can be used to unpick services at both a national and local level would be immensely useful. Additionally, having a clear set of data to share in a transparent way both within the NHS and with the wider public would provide benchmarking and progress indication as well as helping to build trust with stakeholders.Blueteq’s potential role in providing meaningful data was undisputed in the room, despite concerns over the Expanded Disabilities Status Scale (EDSS) - a core element of that data - being a flawed means of measuring a person with MS’s level of disability. This could be reviewed in time and the team behind Blueteq continue to refine it to make it ‘as simple, logical and meaningful as possible’, Malcolm Qualie explained at last year’s event.

What to expect

At this workstream, every attendee will receive core data on their local MS centre drawn from Blueteq and HES, and will be helped to unpick and ask questions of that data. Attendees will leave the session more confident and equipped to work with colleagues locally to use that data to improve local services and meet the needs of people with MS in their population.

More information:

Encouraging excellence, developing leaders, inspiring change

MS Academy was established five years ago and in that time has accomplished a huge amount. The six different levels of specialist MS training are dedicated to case-based learning and practical application of cutting edge research. Home to national programme Raising the Bar and the fantastic workstream content it is producing, this is an exciting Academy to belong to.