The NHS shielded patients list will be disseminated by NHS Digital to recipients under data sharing terms of release which will set out the agreed purposes for which the data is to be used, commitments to secure handling and management of the list, and the scope of onward dissemination.
Who can receive this list
Organisations receiving the list
The following organisations are receiving the list:
- the Cabinet Office, and via the Cabinet Office, Local Authorities, for the purposes of delivering the government's extremely vulnerable persons service
- NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), for the purposes of providing GP practices with support, and patients in their CCG area with support and care
- Capita, for the purposes of distributing letters to shielded patients
- NHS Business Services Authority, for the purposes of sending text messages to shielded patients
- NHS England/NHS Improvement and TPP, for the purposes of identifying patients on the shielded patients list who are currently in prison and who need advice, support, and care.
- Hospitals and GP practices, for patients in their care
- NHS England, for the purposes of commissioning
- National Services Scotland, who are responsible for the Scottish Shielded Patient List. The purpose of sharing this information is so that NSS can contact the English patients to provide them with details of support they can obtain locally from Scottish local authorities where they are resident, including food parcels.
- NHS Wales Informatics Service, who are responsible for the Welsh Shielded Patient List. The purpose of sharing this information is so that NWIS can contact the English patients to provide them with details of support they can obtain locally from Welsh Local Authorities where they are resident, including food parcels.
- Redbridge CCG, who are responsible for the 111 call handling systems for London. The purpose of sharing this information is to support an NHS England pilot programme, so that patients on the Shielded Patient List who call 111 and require referral to an emergency department will now be flagged as being on the Shielded Patient List - enabling clinicians to make appropriate care arrangements
- Somerset NHS foundation trust, who are responsible for mental health services. The purpose of sharing this information is to support an NHS England pilot programme, so that patients on the Shielded Patients List who are in receipt of mental health services from the Trust can be proactively contacted and have their care plans reviewed. This is because shielding is an extreme course of action likely to have had significant impact on the shielding individual’s mental health
Supermarkets do not receive the NHS Shielded Patient List. When patients register with the government’s extremely vulnerable persons service they can request support for food deliveries. It is this information that flows to the supermarkets or food distributors. For further information, see the privacy statement for the government service.
We will update this page with further recipients when required.
Terms of release
This is the terms of release agreed by NHS Digital with the Cabinet Office. Note that at the time of the letter, the list was known as the 'vulnerable patient list'.
The shielded patient list has been established in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with data dissemination being underpinned by NHS Digital’s COPI notice or the Health and Social Care Act 2012. Organisations with whom NHS Digital shares personal data have obligations to keep it for no longer than is necessary for the agreed purposes and in compliance with any Terms of Release issued by NHS Digital.
At the expiry of the COPI notice (or any extension), organisations who have received the NHS shielded patient list will need to securely delete the information held except where it forms part of the patient’s medical record. NHS Digital will issue guidance in the future on the process and attestation that this has been completed.