General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GPDPR) and Opting-Out
Summary of GP Data Collection and GPDPR
As background, all GP practices in England are legally required to share data with NHS Digital under the Health and Social Care Act 2015. NHS Digital is the national custodian for health and care data in England and has responsibility for standardising, analysing, and sharing data and information from across the health and social care system, including general practice.
The data held in the GP medical records of patients are used every day to support health and care planning and research in England, helping to find better treatments and improve patient outcomes for everyone.
This is not a new service - NHS Digital has been collecting patient data from general practices for over 10 years. NHS Digital has recently developed a new way to collect this data, called the General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GPDPR) data collection. The new data collection reduces the burden on GP practices, allowing doctors and other staff to focus on patient care.
The information collected does not include patients’ names or any other identifiable data. The de-personalised data collected is used to support a wide variety of research and analysis to help improve the health and social services.
We appreciate that patients may be concerned and we understand there may be a lot of uncertainty with stories in the press and in social media about what might be going on. We as a practice have double-checked with our local Information Governance Lead and the NHS Digital team and we have been reassured that the data will not be shared for any marketing or insurance purposes. It is kept within NHS organisations and a few trusted research partners. To reiterate, this data will not be made public on an individual level.
Nevertheless, you can still stop your confidential patient information being used for research and planning should you wish to. It’s important to note there are two types of opt-out:
Type 1 opt-out:
You can complete the Type 1 form here to exercise your choice to stop your data being shared from your GP practice to NHS Digital and other NHS organisations. We’ll continue using your data internally at a Practice level and with other local NHS Organisations like hospitals and ambulance services for your individual care needs e.g. referrals, blood tests etc.
If you register a Type 1 Opt-out after this collection has started, no more of your data will be shared with NHS Digital. NHS Digital will, however, still hold the patient data which was shared with us 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:
You can complete the national opt-out form online (nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters) if you don’t want any patient information held by NHS Digital to be shared with other organisations for purposes except your own care.
If you have registered a National Data Opt-out, NHS Digital won’t share any confidential patient information about you with other organisations unless there is an exemption to this, such as where there is a legal requirement or where it is in the public interest to do so, such as helping to manage contagious diseases like coronavirus. You can find out more about exemptions on the NHS website at the link above.
If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact