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Section 1 - Introduction

To deliver the Public Health Wales long-term strategy we will need to make full use of the power of digital and data. Digital and data are changing rapidly, in the tools we use, the methods available, the way people interact with health and wellbeing service or find and use information, and these underpin every aspect of our strategy. So, we have written this digital and data strategy to share our vision and approach in these areas. 

Public Health Wales is a part of the NHS in Wales, and our responsibility goes across the whole country and all the people in it. Our guiding star for what we do as an organisation is to work together to help all the people in Wales live healthier lives. This should be the same for all the things we do, whether it's in person or online, in a clinic or on a smartphone, and so our guiding star in this digital and data strategy is:

We use data and technology to protect and improve the health and well-being of people in Wales and to reduce health inequalities.

The digital services in Public Health Wales include systems to deliver screening services, registers, public health surveillance, research platforms, engagement and survey systems, national and international collaboration with the World Health Organisation, public health agencies in Scotland, Northern Ireland, England, the European Union and the wider world, microbiology laboratories across Wales, pathogen genomics and more.

The data products in Public Health Wales include live information shared with Health Boards and Trusts to deliver health care and support wellbeing, dashboards for specific diseases, wider public health and the causes of public health harms, specialist reports with analysis, a wide collection of statistics and analysis, data science products like higher order analyses of national and local health issues, health economics, AI and complex or big data analyses, research data shared with databanks like SAIL and bespoke data selections for approved health and care research.

Because this strategy is for the whole of Public Health Wales, we have built it by listening to the needs of people who work all across the organisation. Because the strategy will affect people across Wales, we also tried to listen to the needs of people in Wales, as well as the wider NHS, central and local government, academia and other sectors. That should mean that we are working to meet the needs of all those people and groups. Every year, we’ll test whether what we’re doing is really meeting those needs and ask if we can do it better. If there’s anything you think we can change to improve this strategy, please let us know.