Patient data is collected from general practice by NHS Digital to support a wide variety of research and analysis to help run and improve health and care services. A new data collection will be starting from 1st September 2021 (GPDfPR).

What data will be collected?

The following data may be collected from GP medical records:

  • any living patient registered at a GP practice in England when the collection started – this includes children and adults
  • any patient who died after 1st September 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) will be replaced with unique codes which are produced by de-identification software before the data is shared with NHS Digital. Known as pseudonymisation.

Who will receive this pseudonymised data?

NHS Digital will share pseudonymised data with any relevant organisation so that they can use the data to improve health and care services going forward.

Although please note NHS Digital will be able to use software to convert the unique codes back to data that could directly identify patients in certain circumstances, and where there is a valid legal reason.

Will NHS Digital share patient data?

Yes. Although the data NHS Digital will receive from you will be pseudonymised they will have the means to be able to convert this code back into identifiable data. This will only happen where there is a valid legal reason to do so and where they meet strict criteria to use the information for local, regional and national planning, policy development, commissioning, public health and research purposes.

This personal / patient data may then be shared with relevant organisations who can help with that patient’s care.

Can patients opt out?

Yes. You can opt-out through the National Data Opt Out Service online using the link:

For further information, please visit the NHS Digital Website