Who can use your 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.
patient records

Confidential information about your health and care is used by the NHS, local authorities, university and hospital researchers, medical colleges and pharmaceutical companies. It is used to improve your individual care, speed up diagnosis, plan local services, and research new treatments.

In May 2018 the strict rules about how this data can and cannot be used were strengthened. However, you can choose to opt out of sharing your confidential patient information. You can also change your mind at any time.

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.

To find out more you can read the guides below, visit nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters or phone 0300 303 5678.


Your data matters to the NHS
A guide to the national data opt-out for black and minority ethnic communities
A guide to the national data opt-out for carers
A guide to the national data opt-out for young people

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