Data may be shared from the GP medical records about:
- Any living patient registered at a GP practice in England when the collection started, this includes children and adults
- Any patient who died after this data sharing started, and was previously registered at a GP practice in England when the data collection started
We will not share your name or where you live. Any other data that could directly identify you, for example your NHS number, General Practice Local Patient Number, full postcode and date of birth, is replaced with unique codes which are produced by de-identification software before the data is shared with NHS Digital. This process is called pseudonymisation and means that no one will be able to directly identify you in the data.
NHS Digital will be able to use the same software to convert the unique codes back to data that could directly identify you in certain circumstances, and where there is a valid legal reason. Only NHS Digital has the ability to do this. This would mean that the data became personally identifiable data. An example would be where you consent to your identifiable data being shared with a research project or clinical trial in which you are participating, as they need to know the data is about you.
For more information about when NHS Digital may be able to reidentify the data, and how NHS Digital will use your data see the NHS Digital General Practice Data for Planning and Research Transparency Notice.
The Uploaded data includes:
- data on sex, ethnicity and sexual orientation
- clinical codes and data about diagnoses, symptoms, observations, test results, medications, allergies, immunisations, referrals, recalls and appointments, including information about your physical, mental and sexual health
- data about staff who have treated you
More detailed information about the patient data we collect is contained in the Data Provision Notice issued to GP practices.
What is not shared:
- your name and address (except your postcode in unique coded form)
- written notes (free text), such as the details of conversations with doctors and nurses
- images, letters and documents
- coded data that is not needed due to its age, for example medication, referral and appointment data that is over 10 years old
- coded data that we are not permitted to share by law, for example certain codes about IVF treatment, and certain information about gender reassignment
Type 1 Opt-out (opting out of NHS Digital collecting your data)
If you do not want your identifiable patient data to be shared outside of the GP practice for purposes except your own care, you can register an opt out with the GP practice. This is known as a Type 1 opt out. You can register a Type 1 opt out at any time. You can also change your mind at any time and withdraw a Type 1 opt out.
NHS Digital will not collect any patient data for patients who have already registered a Type 1 opt out inline with current policy. If this changes patients who have registered a Type 1 Opt out will be informed.
Data sharing with NHS Digital will start on 1st July 2021.
If you have already registered a Type 1 Opt-out with your GP practice your data will not be shared with NHS Digital.
If you wish to register a Type 1 Opt out with your GP practice before data sharing starts with NHS Digital, this should be done by returning this form to your GP practice by 23rd June 2021 to allow time for processing it. If you have previously registered a Type 1 Opt out and you would like to withdraw this, you can also use the form to do this. You can send the form by post or email to your GP practice.
If you register a Type 1 Opt out after your patient data has already been shared with NHS Digital, no more of your data will be shared with NHS Digital. NHS Digital will however still hold the patient data which was shared with them before you registered the Type 1 Opt out.