Launched in 2020 as part of the Digital Innovation Hub Programme, the Health Data Research Innovation Gateway (the Gateway) is a central location to discover health data and other resources vital for research.

To date, more than 850 metadata descriptions (datasets) from 70+ data custodians have been uploaded to the Gateway, along with 2500+ registered users and over 1000 data uses added to the Gateway data use register.

  • At present, Gateway users can:

    • Discover a broad range of health datasets, searchable by standardised metadata
    • Send informal enquires about datasets directly to data custodians
    • Submit a single streamlined data access request application (certain datasets and custodians only)
    • Find out what, by whom, and why data are used in research projects via the data use register
    • Explore other health data related resources including publications associated with datasets, tools and software to support reproducible research
    • Curate resources around a particular theme or topic
    • Apply to access Cohort Discovery, an advanced search method to run feasibility analyses on select datasets

Evolving requirements

We are committed to realising its full potential as a platform that streamlines not only data discovery but the entirety of the research journey – as the health data landscape evolves, so must the Gateway to meet the emerging needs of its users. The Gateway is funded as part of HDR UK’s core work over the next five years and is being used by NHS England’s Data for Research and Development Programme to provide a ‘single front door’ for research access to the NHS Research Secure Data Environment Network.

Enhancing the Gateway

We have reviewed all existing Gateway services, both in terms of their functionality and the technology sitting behind them and are in the process of enhancing some components to improve their serviceability, performance and reuse. This will make sure that the solutions being delivered are providing a robust foundation for an open technology ecosystem.

As we work towards a new and improved platform there will no disruption to current services during this time – you will see no difference in the platform or the support we provide. The first iteration of an enhanced Gateway is planned for spring/summer 2024.

Be the first to know about all the latest updates by subscribing to our newsletter

Strengthening the ecosystem

Our vision for the Gateway is that it becomes the go-to place for discovering, exploring and accessing health and health-related data, software, research analysis, publications, diseases, phenotypes and other shareable resources – a platform co-created by the community that builds upon existing technological solutions.

The new version of the Gateway will provide much better value to the community. For example, by making health data resources more shareable and discoverable through improved search capabilities. It will also help strengthen the wider technology ecosystem through increased collaboration with other organisations and groups developing similar solutions.

    • Improve automation processes to streamline the curation of assets and content
    • Provide the underpinning platform to match the emerging requirements of the latest data science such as improving the search functionality
    • Ensure our open-source code is modular, scalable and maintainable so it can be easily and rapidly improved by both the HDR UK technology team and the wider community
    • Leverage existing and open-source tools and promote re-use

Be the first to know about all the latest Gateway updates!

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and join the growing community of Gateway users.