National data opt-out programme

Summary

The national data opt-out is a new service that allows people to opt out of their confidential patient information being used for research and planning.

Top tasks

Patients can find out more and set their opt-out choice at nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters.

Health and care staff can download leaflets, posters and other resources to use when informing patients.

The national data opt-out was introduced on 25 May 2018, providing a facility for individuals to opt-out from the use of their data for research or planning purposes. This is provided in line with the recommendations of the National Data Guardian in her Review of Data Security, Consent and Opt-Outs. The service will initially be in beta, while we ensure the service design is optimal.

By 2020 all health and care organisations are required to apply national data opt-outs where confidential patient information is used for research and planning purposes. NHS Digital have been applying national data opt-outs since 25 May 2018.

The national data opt-out replaces the previous ‘type 2’ opt-out, which required NHS Digital not to share a patient’s confidential patient information for purposes beyond their individual care. Any patient that had a type 2 opt-out has had it automatically converted to a national data opt-out from 25 May 2018 and has received a letter giving them more information and a leaflet explaining the new national data opt-out. We will continue to collect and convert type 2 opt-outs during the beta phase, which ends in October 2018, and send a letter to these patients explaining that any recently set type 2 opt-out has been automatically converted to a national data opt-out.

The national data opt-out choice can be viewed or changed at any time by using the online service at www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters.

Join the national data opt-out mailing list

Fill in the national data opt out team contact form to be added to our mailing list for health and care professionals, to keep up to date with news on the national data opt out. Please note, you cannot use this form to set your data opt-out choice.

Further information

  1. internal

    Information for GP practices

    The national data opt-out has replaced type 2 opt outs. GP practices must no longer use the type 2 opt out code to record a patient's opt-out choice.