COVID–19 Patient Notification System (CPNS)


Publications approval reference: 001559 / C0389


Trust Chief executives
Trust Chief Operating Officers
Regional Heads of ICC
Regional CPNS leads
NHS England and NHS Improvement

27 April 2020

Dear colleague

COVID–19 Patient Notification System (CPNS)

CPNS has been the single reporting route for the reporting of COVID-19 related deaths since 24 March. To date, this has recorded hospital deaths where patients have had a positive test result for COVID-19.

From 28 April 2020 onwards, there will be a change to reporting, to include the reporting of death where there is an absence of a COVID-19 positive test result but where COVID-19 is documented as a direct or underlying cause of death on part 1 or part 2 of the death certification process. Deaths with no link to COVID-19, through either a positive test result or a formally recorded mention of COVID-19 in the death registration, will continue to be out of scope and so should not be recorded.

This change and expansion in reporting is to give us a faster, more comprehensive view of the position on overall COVID-19 deaths in hospitals.

Data capture – changes to data systems

On the CPNS provider input screen, users will now be able to indicate the following:

  • Positive COVID-19 test result
  • Negative COVID-19 test result
  • COVID-19 test not carried out
  • COVID-19 test result not known

For any field selected other than a positive test result, there will be a drop-down box relating to the recording of COVID-19, where this has been recorded (as either part 1 or 2) on the death certification notice.

Patients who have a negative swab and do not have COVID-19 entered on the death certification notice, would not be included in this data set.

Kind regards

Professor Keith Willett  | NHS Strategic Incident Director  | NHS England and NHS Improvement