Your right to opt out of data sharing and processing

The NHS Constitution states:

‘You have a right to request that your personal confidential information is not used beyond your own care and treatment and to have your objections considered’.

There are several forms of opt-outs available at different levels:

Type 1 opt-out

If you do not want personal confidential information that identifies you to be shared outside your GP practice you can register a ‘Type 1 opt-out’ with your GP practice.

This prevents your personal confidential information from being used except for your direct health care needs and in particular circumstances required by law, such as a public health emergency like an outbreak of a pandemic disease.

Patients are only able to register the opt-out at their GP practice and your records will be identified using a particular code that will stop your records from being shared outside of your GP practice.

National data opt-out

The national data opt-out was introduced on 25 May 2018 and replaces the previous ‘type 2’ opt-out.

NHS Digital collects information from a range of places where people receive care, such as hospitals and community services. The new programme provides a facility for individuals to opt-out from the use of their data for research or planning purposes.

For anyone who had an existing type 2 opt-out, it will have been automatically converted to a national data opt-out from 25 May 2018 and will receive a letter giving them more information and a leaflet explaining the new national data opt-out.

The national data opt-out choice can be viewed or changed at any time by using the online service.

NHS Digital takes the responsibility for looking after care information very seriously. Please see the NHS Digital information about how we look after information for more detailed documentation.

NHS England recognises the importance of protecting personal and confidential information in all that we do, all we direct or commission, and takes care to meet its legal duties. See the NHS England information about how we use your information for more details.

Gaining access to the data we hold about you