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Victorian Public Service COVID-19 Data Sharing Framework

This Data Sharing Framework supports the Victorian Government’s response to the current and emerging impacts of COVID-19 by facilitating urgent data sharing across government.

Policy context and purpose

The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted the need for the Victorian Public Service (VPS) to accelerate data sharing across government. Unlocking insights from public sector data is critical to supporting Victoria’s management of COVID-19 response, restart and recovery initiatives.

However, cultural, behavioural, legal, governance and risk factors continue slow down data sharing between departments and agencies. To help alleviate some of these barriers, the Victorian Centre for Data Insights (VCDI) developed a COVID-19 Data Sharing Framework (Framework) to shift the onus onto safe sharing, where possible, and to reduce time required for legal negotiations.

Framework

The Framework consists of:

  • The VPS COVID-19 Data Sharing Policy (Policy) which places a clear responsibility on all VPS agencies to share data with each other to support the management of COVID-19, and adopt the Commonwealth data sharing principles
  • The VPS COVID-19 Data Sharing Heads of Agreement (DSHA) which operationalises the Policy and provides a common legal framework for data sharing across the VPS, while ensuring the right safeguards and controls are in place.

The Framework will operate until 31 December 2020 or when the Missions Coordination Committee is disbanded, whichever is later. Learnings from the operation of the Framework will inform VCDI’s approach to develop more enduring approaches to facilitate data sharing across the VPS.

Need help?

VCDI is available to assist in use of the Policy and the DSHA by directing queries to data.insights@dpc.vic.gov.au.

The Office of the Victorian Information Commission (OVIC) and Health Complaints Commissioner (HCC) can also assist with issues concerning personal information and health information respectively. OVIC and HCC have issued  joint guidance to help VPS agencies understand their privacy obligations during COVID-19. The Commonwealth also has helpful online resources, including information about Sharing Data Safely

Reviewed 25 September 2020

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