Choose if data from your health records is shared for research and planning

There have been posts on social media with false information about opting out of sharing your data with the NHS. Here's what you need to know:

There is no 30 September deadline for opting out of sharing your data.
  • You can opt out at any time.
  • NHS Digital will never sell your data.
  • There are strict rules about how the 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.
  • You can read NHS Digital's response to the false information about the national data opt-out:
Information about your health and care helps the NHS to improve your individual care, speed up diagnosis, plan your local services and research new treatments.
So, how do we use your confidential patient information?
Your individual care - Health and care staff may use your confidential patient information to help with your treatment and care. For example, when you visit your GP they may look at your records for important information about your health.
Research and planning - Confidential patient information might also be used to:
  • plan and improve health and care services
  • research and develop cures for serious illness
The NHS cannot analyse all information on its own, so we safely and securely share some with researchers, analysts and organisations who are experts in making sense of complex information. We only share what’s needed for each piece of research, and wherever possible, information is removed so that you cannot be identified.