On this page you will find answers to the most common questions we get asked about our work. Do you have a question that isn’t answered here? If so, please get in touch at info@theprsb.org.

The standards are developed through a review of existing standards and research, followed by wide consultation with health and care professionals, clinical systems and tech suppliers, and people across the four nations.

Suppliers or developers in care provider organisations use them to design and incorporate in their systems, so that health and care professionals and people themselves can then record, access and share the information with everyone using the same specification, and have the same understanding of what it means. Care provider organisations should ensure that clinical systems conform to the information standards when they are purchased.

Using standards in practice means that health and care professionals, and people and their carers, can record or access the information needed for the best care and, where appropriate, it can be shared seamlessly and safely with other staff, other care settings and with people themselves, or their carers.

The standards are designed by health and care professionals, as well as people who use services. They are endorsed by professional and public bodies as good practice.

Health and care professionals already complete care records so this is not additional workload. The information standards are about ensuring that the information is recorded in a consistent, comprehensive way so it can be shared appropriately across the system. This will also mean that the same information will not need to be recorded multiple times.

The standard represents best practice and is the goal we should all be aiming for over time. However, we recognise that that there is a level of compliance that is still safe and effective without being 100% conformant with the standard. This minimum level is defined as the ‘must haves’ and applies to both data items and business rules. The PRSB conformance Quality Mark can only be awarded to organisations that meeting this minimum level. We hope that both system suppliers and organisations providing care will continue to progress their journey towards best practice.

When using the standard in a provider organisation, professionals who are recording or sharing the information must ensure they do so in accordance with the information model and the implementation guidance which sets out the data items that are mandatory (MUST be recorded or shared), required (SHOULD be recorded or shared, if available) and optional (MAY be recorded or shared).

No. The presentation of the data to the users of the system can be determined locally, based on local requirements. However, the conformance requirements of the standard and implementation guidance should be followed.  

The information record standard sets out what information is needed in a particular situation. The FHIR profiles or APIs set out how to send that information – we need the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ to be right for interoperability to be successfully achieved.

Using FHIR or an API as a proxy for the information content definition is problematic because it is not easily understood. Some of the components are about the technical flow of information and are not relevant to a professional or patient, and suppliers need to understand what information needs to be recorded or shared and can then work out how to share it using the technical standards in use locally.

It will take time for all systems to become conformant with standards. However, appropriate levers and incentives will be put in place to help drive implementation and adoption of standards, such as making conformance a requirement of relevant procurement frameworks. PRSB is working with suppliers and local systems to facilitate the transition.