DATAMIND has exciting opportunities to achieve a step change in what is possible for mental health research in the UK, and we welcome wholeheartedly the central and proactive role that Super Research Advisory Group (SRAG) members are playing in keeping us on target.
The job of DATAMIND is to improve what’s known as ‘mental health data science’ in the UK. ‘Data science’ describes research that uses large and complex sources of information, particularly information that’s routinely collected across the population. ‘Routinely collected ‘ is the data that gets recorded as we go about our day to day lives, such as healthcare records from visits to the GP or hospitals.
Input from people with lived experience of mental health conditions is vital to ensure that researchers understand what they’re working with and therefore in how these information resources are assembled and managed. A risk with large and complex information is that researchers draw conclusions without appreciating the experiences from which mental health information is derived. It is equally important to ensure that the research is appropriately directed so that it answers the most relevant questions for those living with mental health conditions.
Alongside the SRAG, we are developing shared understanding and guidance around issues such as consent and who uses the data.
Poor mental health affects almost everyone at some point in their lives to varying degrees and is the biggest cause of ill health for people living in the UK. DATAMIND safely and securely brings together anonymised data from diverse sources by collaborating with health services, schools and mental health charities to improve the lives of those who are living with mental health issues and improve national information on mental health and healthcare.
DATAMIND, The Hub for Mental Health Informatics Research Development, is funded by The Medical Research Council and is delivered in partnership with Health Data Research UK.