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

Your health records contain confidential patient information, which can be used to help with research and planning. If you would like this to stop, you can opt out of this yourself or on behalf of someone else. For example, if you are a parent or guardian of a child under the age of 13.

Your choice will only apply to the health and care system in England. This does not apply to health or care services accessed in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

Information:

This information is also available in other languages and formats.

What confidential patient information is

Two types of information join together to become confidential patient information. This is information that:

  • can identify you
  • says something about your health care or treatment

One example can include your name and address (identifies you) along with what medicine you take (health care or treatment). Identifiable information on its own is used by health and care services to contact patients and this is not confidential patient information.

How 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 is also used to:

  • plan and improve health and care services
  • research and develop cures for serious illnesses

Where you have a choice

You can stop your confidential patient information being used for research and planning. Your confidential patient information will still be used for your individual care. Any choice you make will not change this.

Find out how to make your choice