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Better Security, Better Care is a national and local support programme to help adult social care providers to store and share information safely. It covers paper and digital records.

As a care provider, the programme will help you to evaluate and improve your data and cyber security. This means you can reassure the people you support and their families, your staff, commissioners, regulators, and health and care partners, that you are following good practice – and meeting legal and regulatory requirements.

You do not have to be a data or digital expert to get support. The programme can support you – wherever you are on your data security journey.

The main focus of the Better Security, Better Care programme is to help you to understand the importance of data and cyber security, and complete an annual, online self-assessment using the Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPT).

The programme includes:

  • national support for all CQC registered and unregistered providers including:
  • local support to small and medium-sized care providers
  • support to large care provider groups
  • coordination with other programmes.

National support

All adult social care providers, including services like day services which are not registered with CQC, can access national support. This includes:

We are currently running national webinars on Approaching Standards – a new level that has been introduced for care providers in March 2021 when Entry Level was withdrawn. Find out more and book a place

Local support

29 care associations and other local care sector organisations have received grants to support local care providers in every area of England. These Better Security, Better Care Local Support Partners focus on the needs of smaller and medium sized care providers and will mainly be for services that are registered with CQC.

From March 2021 onwards, these local partners will be contacting providers in their area to offer free support including:

  • Information and advice on data and cyber security and the implications for care providers
  • Free webinars, workshops and training on data security, and on how to complete the Data Security and Protection Toolkit
  • One-to-one support to complete the Toolkit for those who need it.

In some areas, support will be provided by projects led by local councils or the NHS.

The local partners are being supported by the Institute of Public Care at Oxford Brookes.

See a list of all Better Security, Better Care Local Support Partners, and how to contact them.

Support to large providers

If you are part of a large care provider group with services in multiple parts of the country, your head office will probably have well-developed arrangements for data and cyber security for the whole group.

Digital Social Care is supporting the head offices and services of these large provider groups with the DSPT.

You can contact the Digital Social Care team.

If your organisation is large but all or most of your services are in the same local area it is more likely that your local Better Security, Better Care parner will support you.

Co-ordinating with other programmes

We know there are a lot of different data, digital and cyber security projects underway in the health and social care sectors.

In addition, many CCGs, Integrated Care Systems, other NHS organisations and local councils are already supporting adult social care providers with the DSPT, and this will continue. The Better Security, Better Care Local Support Partners will reach out to their local partners and networks and ensure that the support they offer fits in the best way locally.

The Better Security, Better Care programme also includes NHS England & Improvement Regional Leads, Ageing Well Teams and the Association of Directors of Adult Services (ADASS).

The NHS England & Improvement regional leads are linking in to CCGs and Integrated Care Systems to ensure they are aware of the work with care providers.

ADASS is supporting with links to local councils. And the Local Government Association is providing guidance and support to commissioners on the DSPT.

At a national level, Digital Social Care links in with wider government projects.

Local, regional or national organisations who would like to link to the Better Security, Better Care programme can contact:


Governance arrangements

Better Security, Better Care is led by a programme board whose members are NHSX, NHS Digital, NHS England and Improvement, the Local Government Association, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services and, Digital Social Care on behalf of care providers.