NHS England Data Opt-Out

General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GDPR) Opt-Out Guidance

The data held in the GP medical records of patients is used every day to support health and care planning and research in England, helping to find better treatments and improve patient outcomes for everyone. NHS Digital has developed a new way to collect this data, called the General Practice Data for Planning and Research data collection.

You can choose to Opt-out of this data collection. You need to do this by the 30th of September (this has changed from the previous deadline of the 23rd of June). Choosing to opt-out will not affect your care.

What is data used for?

Data collected will be used to support a wide variety of research and analysis to help run and improve health and care services including:

  • Informing and developing health and social care policy
  • Planning and commissioning health and care services
  • Taking steps to protect the public (including managing and monitoring the coronavirus pandemic)
  • Enabling healthcare and scientific research

What data will NHS Digital collect?

This data will be shared from 1 July 2021. Data may be shared from the GP medical records about:

  • any living patient registered at a GP practice in England when the collection started – this includes children and adults
  • any patient who died after 1 July 2021, and was previously registered at a GP practice in England when the data collection started

NHS Digital will not collect patients’ names or addresses. Any other data that could directly identify patients (such as NHS Number, date of birth, full postcode) is replaced with unique codes which are produced by de-identification software before the data is shared with NHS Digital.

NHS Digital Will Collect:

  • data about diagnoses, symptoms, observations, test results, medications, allergies, immunisations, referrals, recalls and appointments, including information about physical, mental and sexual health
  • data on sex, ethnicity and sexual orientation
  • data about staff who have treated patients

NHS Digital Does not collect:

  • name and address (except for postcode, protected in a unique coded form)
  • written notes (free text), such as the details of conversations with doctors and nurses
  • images, letters and documents
  • coded data that is not needed due to its age – for example medication, referral and appointment data that is over 10 years old
  • coded data that GPs are not permitted to share by law – for example certain codes about IVF treatment, and certain information about gender re-assignment

Opting Out:

Type 1 Opt-out

If you do not want NHS Digital to collect any of your data you can complete a Type-1 opt-out form. Please complete the form below and send it to the practice, or visit the practice to collect and fill out a paper copy.

Type One Opt-Out Form


National Data Opt-out

To Opt-out of NHS Digital sharing your information with other organisations, you can complete a National Data Opt-out by following this link:


If you have any further questions, please read the below GDPR Opt-Out FAQ Document:

GDPR Data Opt-Out FAQ