QOMS Audit registries
This page is for patients and members of the public interested in learning about the QOMS Audit registries. A similar page is available to surgeons and other healthcare professionals.
QOMS is currently operating audits or service evaluations across the following OMFS subspecialties: Oral & dentoalveolar surgery, Trauma, Oncology, Reconstruction, Non-melanoma skin cancers, and Orthognathic surgery.
Data collection officially started in July 2021 across the UK and is due to finish in 2024. An Inaugural report was published in 2023 covering the first year of data collection (2021-2022). This report mainly focused on ascertaining that data across the registries would be of high quality to produce comparative results by the end of the current phase in 2024.
Who is organising and funding QOMS?
QOMS is led and funded by the British Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (BAOMS). BAOMS is a registered charity (1062067).
BAOMS is also the project’s data controller. They are responsible for safeguarding your information.
Is my information safe?
Your information is safely held on secure computers, at Barts Cancer Research UK Centre at Queen Mary University of London. Strict rules are in place to make sure it is held under UK and international standards for data security. The Barts Cancer Research UK Centre is regularly subject to control to make sure their systems are up to date and secure.
Access to your personal information is restricted to your clinical team who would have it anyway, and a limited number of staff at Barts and the QOMS team who need to analyse the data.
Why haven’t I been asked for permission to use my information?
In England and Wales, we have approval from the Secretary of State for Health to store and use patient information without consent, under Section 251. In Scotland, we have obtained a similar approval from the Public Benefit Privacy Panel for Health and Social Care (PBPP).
Your rights as data owner are still valid: right to be informed, of access, to rectification, to erasure, to restrict processing, to data portability, to object and the rights related to automated decision making including profiling.
What about the National Data Opt-out registry in England?
The national data opt-out (NDO) is a service that allows patients to opt out of their confidential patient information being used for research and planning. The NDO only applies to England and has become compulsory since October 2022. The NDO applies to QOMS (and other similar projects that depends on section 251 to collect patient data).
What does it mean in practice?
Before data is entered in the QOMS database, the staff at the participating hospital must check whether a patient has signed up or not to the NDO. If yes, then their data will not be included in QOMS.
What will happen to my information?
- Data is regularly checked for errors. Reports are produced on a regular basis during a data collection cycle (once to make sure the data is of good enough quality and once towards the end where data is analysed and comparative results, where possible, are presented).
- Your name will never appear in any project publication. It will be impossible for you to be recognised from this analysis as we will combine your data with that of lots of other patients.
- We will also never share information that can identify you with any other organisations for any reasons other than for linking datasets with approved partners.
- We will keep your personal information for 4 years after the end of collection of follow-up data. Afterwards, we will either remove personal data, keeping just the data on your care, or delete it all.
- Although research is not the aim of QOMS, it will be possible to use the data for what is called “secondary” research (see below). Researcher(s) interested in using the data held by QOMS will have to obtain submit an application to the QOMS Team for review and approval and obtain ethic approval from their institutions. The same principles described above still apply: no data that can identify you will be shared.
Who has reviewed this initiative?
In England and Wales, approval from the Secretary of State for Health to store and use patient information without consent (Section 251) was obtained in December 2020. Approval from the Public Benefit Privacy Panel for Health and Social Care (PBPP) in Scotland was granted in May 2022.
The Information Governance team of participating hospitals also reviews the project to ensure that we follow their data security policies and must give their approval before the start of data collection.
QOMS has also been reviewed by the volunteers of the project’s Patient and Public Involvement group (which includes patients, carers and lay representatives).
What about secondary research?
Your right as patient and data owner to be informed of how your information is used always remains valid. For practical reasons, we cannot contact you to ask whether you consent to your information being used for secondary research. However, to fulfil our duty to inform you, we are publishing on our website, some information about the research projects that have been approved. If you are interested / want to see which secondary research projects are being or have been conducted, please click here.
Do I have to take part in QOMS?
No, you do not have to take part. Participation is totally voluntary. You can change your mind at any time without affecting the level of care you receive.
- If you are happy for your data to be used, you don’t have to do anything.
- If you do not wish to have your information collected for this project, please inform a member of your oral and maxillofacial team or the QOMS team (more details below).
Do you have any questions?
- If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the QOMS Project Manager, Dr Fabien Puglia: BAOMS, Royal College of Surgeons of England, 38/43 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PE
- If you wish to opt out: please call us or email us putting “Opt out" in the subject line.