OpenPrescribing is our most widely used applied data science project, with 20,000 unique users every month. It lets any interested user explore NHS GP prescribing behaviour across the whole country, down to the level of individual doses and brands, of individual drugs, at individual practices, each month. We have a range of prespecified measures showing opportunities to improve the quality, safety, and cost effectiveness of prescribing. We also let users devise their own analyses and alerts. OpenPrescribing represents a huge amount of complex data science “under the bonnet”, with papers on our innovative methods published in BMJ and elsewhere. We have also generated a large body of research on trends and variation in clinicians’ choice of treatments, and what drives change in clinical practice, including randomised trials on our own interventions. Alongside this we have generated extensive technical and policy insights on how data can be put to good use in the NHS, where the blockers lie, and how they can be overcome.

Latest OpenPrescribing blog posts

Prescribing of Lidocaine Plasters

In this guest blog, Molly Mattsson describes how we compared lidocaine prescribing reduction policy implementation in Ireland and England.

Read more about Prescribing of Lidocaine Plasters

Improvement Radar: A new OpenPrescribing tool to identify best practice

We’ve launched a new OpenPrescribing tool, the Improvement Radar, which makes it easy to identify organisations which have shown substantial improvement.

Read more about Improvement Radar: A new OpenPrescribing tool to identify best practice

Latest OpenPrescribing papers

  1. Data-Driven Identification of Potentially Successful Intervention Implementations Using 5 Years of Opioid Prescribing Data

    By applying one of our existing analysis tools to a national dataset, we were able to rank NHS organisations by reduction in opioid prescribing rates. Highly ranked organisations are candidates for further qualitative research into intervention design and implementation.

    Status: Published


    • OpenPrescribing
  2. Educational interventions delivered to prescribing advisers to influence primary care prescribing: a very low-cost pragmatic randomised trial using routine data from

    A low cost randomised trial of an educational intervention in CCGs to influence prescribing of low-priority items

    Status: Preprint


    • OpenPrescribing
  3. Data-Driven Identification of Unusual Prescribing Behavior: Analysis and Use of an Interactive Data Tool Using 6 Months of Primary Care Data From 6500 Practices in England

    Data-driven approaches have the potential to overcome existing biases with regard to the planning and execution of audits, interventions, and policy making within NHS organizations, potentially revealing new targets for improved health care service delivery.


    • OpenPrescribing
  4. Identifying Patterns of Clinical Interest in Clinicians' Treatment Preferences: Hypothesis-free Data Science Approach to Prioritizing Prescribing Outliers for Clinical Review

    A new method for prioritizing prescribing outliers for clinical review with discussion of two illustrative examples of anti-psychotics


    • OpenPrescribing