Organisations should no longer collect ‘classic’ or ‘next generation (Medication, Mental Health, Maternity and C&YPS)’ Safety Thermometer data or submit it to the Safety Thermometer portal. Information on replacement metrics drawn from routinely collected data can be found on the Patient Safety Measurement Unit webpage.

The Safety Thermometer, launched in 2010, was one of the largest and longest-lasting data collection exercises in NHS history. It had a powerful impact in its early years. But more recent evaluations, research and feedback have shown that the data was incomplete, and it was no longer able to support improvement in the intended way. Because of this, new data sources were explored that could take the burden of data collection away from clinical staff and support new improvement initiatives. Ending the Safety Thermometer were publicly consulted on in 2019/20 as part of proposed changes to the NHS Standard Contract. The response supported ending the national collection of Safety Thermometer data from April 2020, and using alternative data sources to continue improving pressure ulcer prevention, falls prevention, VTE prevention and prevention of healthcare-associated infection.

All data collection for the ‘classic’ Safety Thermometer and the ‘next generation’ Safety Thermometers will therefore stop after March 2020. Plans for nationally-produced replacement data to support improvement drawn from routinely collected sources will be provided or signposted on the NHS England and NHS Improvement Patient Safety Measurement Unit webpage as soon as possible.


Safety Thermometer Data Terms of Use

From 01st April 2017, NHS South, Central and West Commissioning Support Unit (SCW) will host the Safety Thermometer Tool on behalf of NHS Improvement1.

Data that you submit via this portal or via email may be collated with data from other organisations and used by provider of NHS-funded care for management purposes only2. Data may be made available at local, regional and/or national level (including the devolved administrations).

Data are not to be used to make public statements or pronouncements, or cause, or allow the data to appear in public either directly or indirectly, without the permission of NHS Improvement and appropriate attribution.

Data must not be used where this can render an individual identifiable and where this information is not already in the public domain.

As well as sharing data via the Safety Thermometer tool with NHS Organisations for those purposes mentioned above, we may share your data direct with organisations such as NHS England, NHS Digital, other arm’s length bodies (ALBs) of the Department of Health, private bodies and higher education institutions (HEIs) to facilitate the delivery of works that fall within those purposes aforementioned. Disclosure of data to third parties will always be accompanied by an appropriate data sharing arrangement.

All Safety Thermometer data are to be made publicly available through the Safety Thermometer tool Historic ‘Classic’ Safety Thermometer data previously published by NHS Digital will continue to be available on their website at

Your data will be accessed by SCW staff whilst they support and maintain the Safety Thermometer tool, manage data submissions and oversee data sharing activities on behalf of NHS Improvement.

Before any data is shared we would expect your organisation to satisfy itself that it has the appropriate authority/permission to share the information via the portal (e.g. that it would not be breaching any duty of confidentiality to a third party) and raise any concerns or issues accordingly. You shall be responsible for managing and controlling your organisation’s access to and use of the data and should take all reasonable precautions to prevent any unauthorised disclosure or use of the data. Please also note your data does not undergo any validation checks once received by SCW. You are therefore asked that you make all reasonable efforts to ensure its accuracy.

Your data are stored securely and are regularly backed up. Data will be stored by SCW until the end of the Safety Thermometer programme. Access to your data is controlled by SCW and shall be shared only for those purposes recorded here.

Should NHS Improvement intend to make any change to any of the above uses, we will endeavour to contact all trusts and include you in our discussions, in particular where your rights as data owners are likely to be affected.

©NHS Trust Development Authority operating as NHS Improvement, 2016. All Rights Reserved. Not to be reproduced in whole or in part without the permission of the copyright owner. For the avoidance of doubt, NHS Trusts, NHS Foundation Trusts, Clinical Commissioning Groups; the NHS Commissioning Board; and the following organisations that provide services to the NHS: private hospitals, care homes and hospices in England; shall be entitled to use the Safety Thermometers free-of-charge, for the purpose of improving patient safety. All other parties must seek written permission from NHS Trust Development Authority operating as NHS Improvement before reproducing the Safety Thermometers”.

For further advice or information please see the data available here or email

1. NHS Improvement is the operational name for the organisation that brings together Monitor, NHS Trust Development Authority, Patient Safety, the National Reporting and Learning System, the Advancing Change team and the Intensive Support Teams.

2. As management metrics or indicators to help analyse or identify actions for improvement, and to monitor related improvement activities.