Information about you and the care you receive is shared, in a secure system, by healthcare staff to support your treatment and care.
It is important that we, the NHS, can use this information to plan and improve services for all patients. We would like to link information from all the different places where you receive care, such as your GP, hospital and community service, to help us provide a full picture. This will allow us to compare the care you received in one area against the care you received in another, so we can see what has worked best.
Information such as your postcode and NHS number, but not your name, will be used to link your records in a secure system, so your identity is protected. Information which does not reveal your identity can then be used by others, such as researchers and those planning health services, to make sure we provide the best care possible for everyone.
You have a choice. If you are happy for your information to be used in this way you do not have to do anything. If you have any concerns or wish to prevent this from happening, please speak to practice staff or download a copy of the leaflet “How information about you helps us to provide better care” below.
We need to make sure that you know this is happening and the choices you have.
You can find out more on the NHS England Care Data website
Data Sharing and Data Opt-out
Data Sharing and Data Opt-out
Type 1 opt-out & National Data opt-out
Your health records contain a type of data called confidential patient information. This data can be used to help with research and planning.
You can choose to stop your confidential patient information being used for research and planning. You can also make a choice for someone else like your children under the age of 13.
NHS Digital will never sell your data. There are strict rules about how NHS can use your data. It's only shared securely and safely. Shared data helps the NHS. It has been used to find the first treatment for coronavirus and for vaccine research.
If you're happy with your confidential patient information being used for research and planning you do not need to do anything.
Any choice you make will not impact your individual care. Please click on the link to find out more and opt out if you wish to do so.
If you don’t want your identifiable patient data to be shared for purposes except for your own care, you can opt-out by registering a Type One opt out or a National Data Opt out, or both. These opt-outs are different and they are explained in more detail below. Your individual care will not be affected if you opt-out using either option.
Type 1 Opt-out (opting out of NHS Digital collecting your data)
NHS Digital will not collect data from GP practices about patients who have registered a Type 1 Opt-out with their practice. You can opt out by completing the form and send to your GP practice.
This collection will start on 1 September 2021.
If you register a Type 1 Opt-out after this collection has started, no more of your data will be shared with NHS Digital but will however still hold the patient data which was shared with them before you registered the Type 1 Opt-out.
If you do not want NHS Digital to share your identifiable patient data with anyone else for purposes beyond your own care, then you can also register a National Data Opt-out.
National Data Opt-out (opting out of NHS Digital sharing your data)
NHS Digital will collect data from GP medical records about patients who have registered a National Data Opt-out. The National Data Opt-out applies to identifiable patient data about your health, which is called confidential patient information.
NHS Digital won’t share any confidential patient information about you - this includes GP data, or other data we hold, such as hospital data - with other organisations, unless there is an exemption to this.
To find out more information and how to register a National Data Opt-Out, please read the GP Data for Planning and Research Transparency Notice.