You are here:

Our terms, conditions and policies

Terms and conditions

1 Introduction

The Department of Health and Social Care owns the NHS website. The content, data and services on the NHS website are delivered by NHS Digital. You may access and use this website if you agree to be legally bound by the terms set out here. If you do not agree to be legally bound by these terms, please do not access and/or use the NHS website.

Terms for access to and use of the patient feedback facility under which you can review, or comment on, individual NHS services, such as GPs or hospitals, or comment on articles, are set out in sections 7 to 10 below. If you agree to be legally bound by the terms you may use the comments facility. If you do not agree to be legally bound by these terms, please do not use the facility to post comments.

The NHS website is intended for use only by people who live in England. References to "the NHS" mean "the NHS in England" unless otherwise stated. Service descriptions, entitlements and costs refer to services in England and arrangements may differ elsewhere in the UK. 

2 Changes to terms

We may make changes to the NHS website, including these terms, at any time. You will be legally bound by the updated or amended terms from the first time that you use the NHS website after we publish the changes on it.

3 Intellectual property rights

The rights in images, trademarks, trade names and logos included in NHS.UK are owned by the Department of Health and Social Care and third parties. You will need to obtain permission in writing from the owner before you may use these items in any way.

The permission to reproduce protected material does not extend to the material on this site which is identified as being the copyright of a third party. Videos and interactive tools on the NHS website are not sublicensable under section 3.4, but are made available under licence to embed in other websites by the Department of Health and Social Care for non-commercial use only subject to the following additional licence terms. Before you embed this content in any other website you will need to obtain permission in writing from us, and where relevant also our licensors. By using the embed codes provided to allow videos and interactive tools to be embedded in other websites, you accept and agree to the following additional terms:

(a) You must not alter, adapt, edit, incorporate, modify or translate the video or tool in any way.

(b) You must not alter, adapt, edit, modify or remove the NHS branding.

(c) You must not use the video or tool for purposes that are illegal, derogatory or otherwise objectionable or that bring the NHS or any third party into disrepute.

(d) You may not indirectly or directly charge users specifically for accessing the video or tool, or otherwise commercialise such content, nor attempt to re-sell NHS content in any way.

(e) You may not directly or indirectly suggest any endorsement or approval by the NHS of your site or any non-NHS entity, product or content or any views expressed within your site or service.

(f) We have absolute editorial control over all NHS videos and tools.

(g) You should refresh cached content every 24 hours to ensure you have the most up-to-date version.

(h) We reserve the right to alter, adapt, edit, modify or restrict the availability of videos or interactive tools for use on third-party sites at any time.

These terms specific to video and interactive tools may be updated from time to time. Please review them each time you deploy new embed codes.

Non-commercial use. Subject to the terms in sections 3.1 and 3.2, which we may update from time to time, for non-commercial use (which includes personal use, or for use by a registered charity, or a not-for-profit organisation, or a public sector body including NHS organisations, in each case for their own purposes only), you may copy, download, adapt or print off copies of the materials, information, data and other content included on the NHS website. You will need to obtain permission in writing from us, and where relevant also our licensors, before you make any other use of NHS website content.

Commercial use. Subject to the exclusions in sections 3.1, 3.2 and 11.5, which we may update from time to time, commercial organisations may make use of licensable content using the Open Government Licence (OGL). You will need to obtain permission in writing from us and, where relevant, also our licensors, before you make any other use of NHS website content.

Any editing of NHS website clinical content may invalidate its formal approval; the organisation or individual amending the content will bear any risk associated with such amendment.

For information about how we track and collect information for third-party sites, please see the relevant service's privacy policy.

All title, ownership rights and intellectual property rights in and to NHS website content shall remain the property of the Department of Health and Social Care and its licensors.

4 Medical information

The NHS website provides medical information for use as information or for educational purposes. We do not warrant that information we provide will meet your health or medical requirements. It is up to you to contact a health professional if you are concerned about your health.

The NHS website does not give medical advice in relation to any individual case or patient, nor does The NHS website provide medical or diagnostic services.

If you are a medical or health professional then you are encouraged to use the NHS website for general information purposes. However, you should not rely on material included on the NHS website and we do not accept any responsibility if you do.

5 Third-party websites

We do not monitor the content of third-party websites or third-party applications. Any link provided on NHS.UK is solely for your convenience. We do not accept any responsibility for any third-party website or third-party applications.

Where we provide links to third-party websites, that does not imply any association with or recommendation for those websites. See our external links policy.

Where we provide links to third-party applications, that does not imply any association with or recommendation for those applications. See our external links policy.

6 Liability

We accept no liability to you should the NHS website not be available at any particular time.

We do not accept any liability to you for any of the following types of loss or damage (which you may suffer as a result of your use of the NHS website) whether the losses were foreseen, foreseeable, unforeseen, unforeseeable, known, unknown or otherwise:

(a) loss which arose when you first accessed or registered to use the NHS website, or any of our linked sites and services, (even if that loss results from our failure to comply with these terms or our negligence);

(b) any business loss you may suffer, including loss of revenue, loss of profits or loss of anticipated savings (whether those losses are the direct or indirect result of our default);

(c) loss which you suffer other than as a result of our failure to comply with these terms or our negligence or breach of statutory duty;

(d) any loss suffered due to the default of any party other than us.

We do not warrant that the NHS website or any content will be available uninterrupted or error free, that defects will be corrected, or that NHS.UK or its supporting systems are free of viruses or bugs.

We do not accept any liability to you if we fail, or are interrupted or delayed in the performance of any obligation because of:

(a) the non-availability or failure of any telecommunications or computer services, systems, equipment or software operated or provided by you or any third party;

(b) any other event not reasonably within our control.

We do not give any commitments or accept any liability to you in respect of NHS.UK content provided by other users of the website or third parties.

Terms set out here should be read in conjunction with our external links policy. You acknowledge and agree that we will not be responsible for any injury, loss or damage (whether direct or indirect) arising out of, or relating to the misuse of, or inappropriate reliance on the contents or advice provided via an external link on this website, except to the extent that such liability cannot be limited or excluded by law.

7 Registration to post comments

To post comments on NHS.UK pages you must provide a valid email address and any other information we request.

Terms set out here and at sections 8, 9, and 10 should be read in conjunction with our comments policy.

8 Posting comments

Postings you make to the NHS website shall not be treated as confidential.

You are legally responsible for the content of any material you submit for posting on NHS.UK.

The Department of Health and Social Care shall own intellectual property rights in any material posted on NHS.UK.

9 Editorial control of comments

We reserve the right (on behalf of ourselves and any moderator that we may appoint) to:

(a) temporarily or permanently suspend your access to our comments facilities;

(b) edit, not put on the website, or delete any posts you submit; or

(c) take any other action against your registration if, in our view, you have not complied with the rules of conduct set out below.

10 Online conduct

If you are under 16 you should seek your parent's or guardian's consent before you submit a comment.

Comments posted should relate to your personal experience or that of someone close to you. You should not name any individuals (other than yourself) or include information through which someone else could identify an individual about whom you are writing. If you want to comment on someone else's experience, (eg a relative or someone you care for) then you may do so if you ensure that you are not named in the posting and you state how the other person is connected to you (eg "my father"). You warrant that all statements of fact in any comment you submit are true, and that any expression of opinion is your honestly held opinion on those facts, or that of the person on whose behalf you are writing.

Comments on services should be relevant to helping people make choices about places where they can receive medical treatment or other care. Postings should be constructive, truthful and not abusive.

You should not use the comments facilities to make complaints about individual hospitals, GP practices or treatment centres if you wish the matter to be dealt with under the NHS complaints procedures.

If you find any comments offensive or objectionable you may make a complaint to the moderator using the "Report" link provided at the foot of each published comment.

We have many measures in place to keep your information safe. But it is important that you also play your part – visit the government's Get Safe Online website for advice on how to do this.

11 NHS National Data Opt-Out service

The National Data Opt-Out service allows you to manage your data sharing choice. It comprises a set of information pages and a set of interactive pages.

Certain sections of the National Data Opt-Out service require you to insert (or provide by telephone, or send by post) personal data, to verify your identity and enable you to use the National Data Opt-Out service in its entirety. You agree all information provided will be accurate and complete.

It is your responsibility to inform an NHS service or GP practice if anything changes with your personal data.

To note, your data submitted as part of the National Data Opt-Out service will not be viewable on the public area of the NHS website. See our National Data Opt-Out Privacy Notice for more details on how this service uses your personal data.

The National Data Opt-Out service pages including all content, information, services and software provided on the National Data Opt-Out service pages are not licensed for commercial use under section 3.4.

12 Attacks, unauthorised access and other violations

You must not try to gain unauthorised access to the NHS website, our services, the servers on which they're stored, or any server, computer or database connected to them. You must not attack the services in any way, (this includes denial-of-service attacks). We'll report any attacks or attempts to gain unauthorised access to the site or service to the relevant law enforcement authorities and shall share information about you with them.

You may not use the NHS website to transmit any false, misleading, fraudulent or illegal communications.

13 Remedies

To the extent that we are practically able to do so, we may terminate your access to all or any part of NHS.UK and services at any time without notice if you breach any of the terms.

You may terminate your account registration using the "Deactivate my NHS Choices account" link in your account pages. This will clear any personal information you have saved. Subscriptions to our emails can be terminated using the "Unsubscribe" links provided in the emails.

We reserve the right to investigate complaints or reported violations of our terms and to take any action we consider appropriate, including but not limited to reporting any suspected unlawful activity to law enforcement officials, regulators, or other third parties and disclosing any information necessary or appropriate to such persons or entities relating to user information, email addresses, usage history, IP addresses and traffic information.

14 General

If any of these terms are determined to be illegal, invalid or otherwise unenforceable then the remaining terms shall remain in full force and effect.

These terms, together with the service specific additional terms, shall be governed by and interpreted in accordance with the laws of England.

The NHS website is delivered for the Department of Health and Social Care by:

NHS Digital
1 Trevelyan Square
Boar Lane
West Yorkshire


Page last reviewed: 24/05/2018

Next review due: 24/05/2021

The Information Standard

NHS Choices has been certified as a reliable source of health and social care information

Get online: take control of your health

Find out how you can improve your health and wellbeing by learning a few simple online skills