Management of investigations and serious incidents policy

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that risks associated with serious incidents are identified and managed in accordance with best practice and in line with the expectations of the NHS Resolution, the Health and Safety Executive, the Care Quality Commission, NHS England and NHS Improvement, Clinical Commissioning Groups and the public.

Publication date:
01 September 2019
Date range:
September 2019 - September 2022

10. Retention of records


The NHS Records Management Code of Practice 2021 advices on how incident records should be maintained and notes this to be a minimal period which can be extended by up to 20 years:

Retention of records table
Record type Retention start date Retention period Action at the end of retention period
Serious incidents Date of incident  20 years Review and consider transfer to a place of deposit
Incidents (not serious) Date of incident 10 years Review and if no longer needed destroy


All information relating to Serious Incidents will be retained on Datix. This includes the RCA report and any draft reports, any statements if required, analysis records, notes from the investigation and any further information used in the investigation. During the course of the investigation, each version of the report must be uploaded to Datix. This should be uploaded by individuals responsible for the version or can be sent to the Patient Safety
team for uploading. The remainder of the information can be uploaded following the completion of the investigation. This should clearly state the version control number and whether it is draft or final.