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Practices (Contractors) Asked to Update The NHSmail Data Protection Security Toolkit (DSPT)

20 September 2021

NHSEI/NHS Digital has issued a request for NHSmail account holders to complete the Data Security & Protection Toolkit (DSPT).

This has to be completed on an annual basis and completing the DSPT is a prerequisite for signing up to an NHSmail account.

NHSmail provides a secure platform to transmit and receive optometry communication across eyecare providers and other community and health services. It also ensures patients with serious, potentially fatal and/or serious eye conditions are appropriately prioritised and able to access optometry services and care as quickly as possible.

The DSPT is an online self-assessment tool which allows organisations to measure their performance against the National Data Guardian’s 10 data security standards. Organisations which have access to NHS patient data must use the DSPT to provide assurance they are practising good data security and that personal information is handled correctly.

NHSX, NHS Digital and NHSEI are holding webinars to help contractors in the completion of the DSPT. Presented by John Hodson, Senior Information Assurance at NHS Digital, the webinars will feature a short demo, tips for how to get going and an opportunity to ask questions.

The webinars will take place on the following dates:

  • Thursday 21 October 21, 17:30-18:15
  • Wednesday 3 November 21, 17:30-18:15

To register, email stating your name, job role, company and the webinar you would like to attend. A Microsoft Teams invite will follow.

You can see the full statement on DSPT here.

Additional Information:

Locums and NHSmail accounts

Further to the recent communication around NHSmail accounts and the DSP Toolkit, shared mailboxes and individual user accounts are issued to contractors upon completion of the DSP Toolkit. An active ODS code is required to complete the DSP Toolkit and submit the NHSmail application. There is no facility for locums to obtain an NHSmail account on an individual basis.

Locum clinicians are still able to send secure emails to NHSmail recipients, for example referrals to Secondary Care or GPs. The Egress platform is free to use and easy to set up, NHSBSA has introduced a facility for sending Egress invitation emails to locum clinicians. Secure, encrypted emails are then accessible through personal, non-NHSmail email accounts. To request an Egress invitation email, each locum clinician are asked complete an online form. The invitation should be received within a week.

The DSP Toolkit ensures that the contractor has made the necessary arrangements to keep data secure, including having specific data policies and arranging for staff working in the practice to have regular data protection training

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