Long-term efficiency requires present improvements in the relevance and scope of information systems. It points out that data collection alone- as broadly characteristic of the NHS/DHSS (Körner) Steering Group approach- is not enough. Ability to have access to data, to manipulate, analyse, and therefore produce information is equally- indeed eventually more important.
Additionally, the subsequent use of information for intelligence is a step even more neglected at present. Since information is dependent upon data, questions as to which is the more important are academic.
All three aspects, collection, analysis, and use, are part of a process which should be co-ordinated. The culmination of that process is intelligence, with the prospect of a more effective and efficient use of resources in the NHS. There is need for a co-ordinated policy, including carefully formulated plans for education and training of personnel to carry out the necessary functions.
McLachlan G (1985) Data, information and intelligence: A statement of needs and opportunities of relevance to the new NHS management procedures. Nuffield Trust.