2024 Highly Commended: Award for Statistical Excellence in Trustworthiness, Quality and Value for the UKHSA’s data dashboard.

Judges praised this entry for the value delivered by UKHSA’s work, as well as the response to user needs.

Applying the Code: Trustworthiness, Quality and Value (TQV)

UKHSA first became a voluntary adopter of the Code during the pandemic when they created their COVID-19 dash-board, winning the award in 2022 for demonstrating how they uphold the pillars of Trustworthiness, Quality and Value (TQV) in their published Statement of Compliance.

UKHSA’s continued application of TQV is exceptional, with this new joint initiative (undertaken in partnership with the Data Product Development division within Data, Analytics and Surveillance Group and the DevOps division within the Technology Group, the revised UKHSA data dashboard went live in September 2023, completely replacing the previous COVID-19 dashboard.

TQV was central to the design of this new UKHSA data dashboard, with the pillars allowing the Agency to:

  • save time by moving to leading technology;
  • free up resource by introducing more automation and Reproducible Analytical Pipelines; and
  • save money by decommissioning the COVID-19 dashboard.

Ensuring a smooth transition between old and new, the team ran both dashboards in parallel and kept users updated through regular communications and positive press relations.

Impact with Numbers

Building on the strong foundations of its predecessor, the new dashboard has enhanced accessibility, data quality, metrics, and user experience for the public and professionals.

Extensive user research was key in the development stages – with 5,000 responses from stakeholder sessions, focus groups and surveys. Since launch, insights reveal that:

  • 69,000 users have visited the dashboard;
  • 4,000,000 Application Programming Interface (API) requests have been logged – from websites integrating data from the dashboard into their sites;
  • 34GB of data has been downloaded; and
  • a cost saving of £5m has been achieved.

Preparing for Future Health Threats

Supporting UKHSA strategic priorities to improve action on health security through data and insight, new data and features on health threats are continually being developed.

Recent additions have included:

This summer, data on anti-microbial resistance, climate change, and public health incidents will be added, as well as enhancements to the API to increase flexibility and make it easier to select multiple features within the data.

Accessibility and Diversity

Designed to meet the needs of as many people as possible, dashboard users can:

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts;
  • zoom in up to 300% without the text spilling off the screen;
  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard; and
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition and screen reader software.

It is also the first UKHSA product to pass the Government Digital Service’s alpha and beta assessments – ensuring operational excellence for the Agency in their data ambitions to be as accessible as possible.

Sam Organ, Director of Data Operations, said:

‘We are delighted to have been recognised by the Royal Statistical Society and the Office for Statistics Regulation for our work to deliver a trusted, high quality and valuable data service to our users.

‘The UKHSA data dashboard puts accessibility and automation at the heart of its design. This approach has been instrumental in helping people use data to drive health security decisions as well as supporting UKHSA to make cost savings.

‘This is an excellent tribute to what UKHSA can achieve through cross-Agency collaboration and I would like to thank colleagues from across DAS, Technology, Health Protection Operations, Clinical and Public Health and Science, for their continued work to build and deliver such a successful service. Well done to all involved!’

More information

You can find out more information on the team’s Pulse page, and visit the UKHSA data dashboard on gov.uk. If you have a question, you can contact: datadashboard@ukhsa.gov.uk