We always take care to respect patient confidentiality and have detailed policies and procedures we follow to ensure we handle information in as secure a manner as possible.
Please click on the following links for more information:
There is a short video which has been made by NHS Liverpool (which is both informative and entertaining) which is already running a similar scheme to this one in Sunderland.
It explains why allowing us to share your information with secondary care and the extended Primary Care team is extremely useful in your healthcare. To view the video, click here
Your health and care information is used to improve your individual care.
It is also used to help us research new treatments, decide where to put GP clinics and plan for the number of doctors and nurses in your local hospital.
Wherever possible we try to use data that does not identify you, but sometimes it is necessary to use your confidential patient information.
What is confidential patient information?
Confidential patient information identifies you and says something about your health, care or treatment. You would expect this information to be kept private. Information that only identifies you, like your name and
address, is not considered confidential patient information and may still be used for example, to contact you if your GP practice is merging with another.
Who can use your confidential patient information for research and planning?
It is used by the NHS, local authorities, university and hospital researchers, medical colleges and pharmaceutical companies researching new treatments.
Making your data opt-out choice
You have the right to opt-out at any time from data being shared.
Your data is used in broadly two different ways:
- To provide you with care. This is called “Primary Use“
- To allow for planning and research to be done. This is called “Secondary Use“
Both uses will only be made where it is considered secure and appropriate to use patient data.
Opting-out of data sharing is an option for all patients, however it is not without potential downsides.
For Primary Use data, if you opt-out and need care in a local hospital, for example, it may be much harder for the staff to access important medical information about you needed to provide safe and effective care.
For Secondary Use, the downsides are more indirect. If everyone in the country were to opt-out, it would make it much harder to ensure funding is used in the NHS to develop services where they are needed. It would also be harder to develop new treatments.
It is possible to opt-out of specific parts of data sharing, while keeping some elements of data sharing in place. It is very common, for example, for people who have privacy concerns about Secondary Use, to be happy to continue sharing data for Primary Use/Direct Care.
The below table summarises what opt-outs are possible, and how to request them:
How data in your GP record is used, and how you can control the use
Primary Use – sharing your data for your direct care
|Who it is shared with||How it is used||How to opt out|
|Summary Care Record||These are used by NHS hospitals and other providers (e.g. midwives) to ensure they have the data needed to provide you with the right care.||Opt out through your GP practice – contact the surgery reception to speak to the practice manager to discuss this and we will be able to apply the opt-out|
|Great North Care Record|
Secondary Use – Using your data to design health services and do health research
|Who it is shared with||How it is used||How to opt out|
|Local NHS Organisations (such as Clinical Commissioning Groups)||Using data to plan how to design local services around the needs of the population||Use a ‘type-1 opt out’ – Please send this form to the practice by emailing to us at: sunccg,firstname.lastname@example.org|
|NHS Digital||Using data to plan and design national services around the needs of the population|
|External research organisations||Using data for various research purposes||Use the National Data Opt-out – Visit the NHS website, use the NHS App or call 0300 3035678
How to manage your sharing preferences using the NHS App
You can view or change your current preference at any time.
To view and change your preference in the NHS App:
- Go to Your health
- Select Choose if data from your health and care records is shared for planning and research.
- Select Make your choice.
- Review the information on the page, then select Start now.
- View your preference, then select Change if you want to change it.
- Update your choice, then select Submit.
You can also visit nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters.
You can choose to opt out of sharing your confidential patient information for research and planning.
There may still be times when your confidential patient information is used: for example, during an epidemic where there might be a risk to you or to other people’s health.
You can also still consent to take part in a specific research project.
Will choosing this opt-out affect your care and treatment?
No, your confidential patient information will still be used for your individual care. Choosing to opt out will not affect your care and treatment. You will still be invited for screening services, such as screenings for bowel cancer.
If you have any questions about the national data opt-out, or want to view or change your national data opt-out choice at any time, you can direct them to use the online service at nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters/ or to call 0300 3035678.
National Diabetes Audit: If you have diabetes, the NHS requires us to submit data in regards to your care and treatment to the audit. If you do not wish to have your data submitted, please contact reception.
Cause For Concern Notifications
Please note that may receive information from Northumbria Police in regards to patients who are perpetrators of domestic abuse incidents when children are known to be in the household.
This is provided for information only but may be used in future assessments.