Surrey County Council

Vulnerable People Emergency Response Programme



Surrey County Council is a UK Local Authority with an ambitious digital data transformation program, pushing open data and linking up different services & partners to improve quality of services for residents.


Government agencies and local authorities need to provide an accurate and up to date register of vulnerable people to the emergency services in case of local disasters like fire and flood.  Surrey CC was one such agency with a duty of care and requirement to establish links between health, emergency services and the authority’s own care services to ensure responders on the ground were equipped with relevant information from health and care systems

However, producing such accurate and timely information presented significant data management challenges, since data had to be linked from over 30 agencies & healthcare providers and strict data governance policies had to be adhered to.

“If we don’t have a way of talking to each other when we need to get information about vulnerable people in the community quickly, that becomes problematic,”

- Lucy Glenday, CDO, Surrey County Council


In partnership with Kainos, the council used Datactics software to build a data sharing hub which allows relief agencies to share information during emergencies to ensure vulnerable people are protected.

  • Loading, consolidation & standardization of large volumes of citizen data from disparate sources was automated with Datactics Data Quality Manager
  • 1000,000s rows of citizen data quickly matched with 100,000’s rows of vulnerable persons data
  • Addresses validated against Post Code Address file (PAF)
  • Address information enhanced with GPS coordinates for on map visualization
  • Data governance policies applied to storage and distribution of data

The system uses residents NHS number as a primary identifier and links with data shared from other sources to pull information such as an individual’s name, address and important medical information, such as whether they need a sterile environment, are in a wheelchair or have a mental health problem, to ensure the rescue services are prepared with the right resources.


  • Emergency services on the ground can quickly obtain relevant information from health and care systems, matching it to a dashboard or interactive map of vulnerable people.
  • Emergency services can arrive prepared with appropriate resources for assisting vulnerable people.
  • Data dissemination follows strict governance protocols with responders only able to see information that is relevant to them, and no detailed medical history.
  • Data retention policies can be enforced to ensure compliance.

The solution won the Editor’s Choice Award for the Computer Weekly 2016 Digital Leaders 100 Awards – click here to read the full article.


“It gives them the kind of information they need to be able to respond immediately,”

- Lucy Glenday, CDO, Surrey County Council