Welcome to the Discovery Data Service knowledge base

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DRAFT: These pages are at an early stage of development, with many articles to be lifted from the Discovery document repository.

The articles describe and define Discovery Data Service functionality and technology; the architecture that underpins the data service software, the components that make up the service, the testing and assurance processes, and the resources, technologies, and software that are used to host, develop, and support the service.

Discovery overview

These articles provide background to the ideas, philosophies and approaches that have resulted in the Discovery Data Service. They cover the original objectives, the approach to collaboration and shared tenancy, and the information governance rules that underpin the way privacy and sharing are balanced.

  • What is Discovery? This article describes what Discovery is and how it is conceptualised at a very high level.

Information model related topics

These articles provide information about the services, structure, and functionality that operate using the Discovery Common Information Model; one of the fundamental tenets of the Discovery Data Service. This is the starting point for those interested in health data and the information derived from it, and why Discovery may be different from other approaches:

 Operational and interoperability topics

These articles provide information about how systems can interoperate with Discovery and provide further links into test APIs, schemas, and other documentation associated with data formats for sending and receiving data.


These articles provide information about the services provided by the Discovery Data Service and the underlying functionality.

  • Simple Generic query Service - describes a service that provides data on request for data that might be conceptually very complex, but falls into simple common patterns.
  • Information model services - the technical services that enable the common information model to be used.
  • Get health record - describes the service that obtains a fully structured health record about a person, in real time via a standards based API.
  • Record publication service - describes the service that publishes data from health records for specific purposes, often immediately on receipt.
  • Data set distribution service - describes the service that distributes sets of data for populations of patients where the definition is complex or where the subscriber is hosting a copy of the data permanently.


These articles provide information about the technologies used in the Discovery Data services, including summaries of considerations and tests that have been undertaken when selecting technologies.

Publisher system known issues

This section documents the known long standing problems relating to systems that publish data to Discovery. The issues as categorised by supplier and system. These issues need to be taken into account when configuring the services to process the data. The issues do not include short term glitches or errors.

Application help

  • Data Sharing Manager - Data Sharing Manager provides a visual representation of data that is being shared and processed and by which organisations, regions, and/or services.
    You can also amend or cancel data sharing and processing agreements in real time.