Bell House Medical Centre

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Data Opt Out Policy


This policy is intended to identify how Bell House Medical Centre will meet its contractual responsibilities in accordance with the NHS Digital National Data Op[t out and your data matters programme, and To comply with national data opt-out policy, you need to put procedures in place to review uses or disclosures of confidential patient information against the operational policy guidance.

The mandatory implementation deadline for the National Data Opt-Out (NDOO) is  31 July 2022

Application of the NDOO is aligned with the authorisation for using a patient’s data in accordance with the common law duty of confidentiality.  It does not apply where:

  • The individual has consented (including where the consent is implied for the purposes of direct care)
  • There is an overriding public interest. More on this can be found in the NDOO operational policy guidance– 
  • There is a mandatory legal requirement to use the information (e.g., where data is required by NHS Digital under section 259 of the Health and Social Care Act 2012).
  • Data is processed under regulation 3 of the Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002 for purposes of communicable diseases and other threats to public health
  • Data has been anonymised in line with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) Code of Practice) on Anonymisation or is aggregate or count type data.

In practice this means that, broadly, the NDOO applies to data processed under regulation 5 of the Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002 (also known as section 251 approval) unless there is a specific exemption in place. 

The Health Research Authority publishes a register of programmes which are processing data under regulation 5, which can be found here.

NHS Digital will publish a list of all those programmes relying on section 251 approval for processing which are exempt from application of the NDOO shortly.

Information for organisations on applying the NDOO can be found on the NHS Digital website here.


Type 1 opt-out: medical records held at GP practice

Some patients will have a type 1 opt-out registered with their GP practice, which indicates they do not want their confidential patient information leaving the practice for research and planning purposes. These existing type 1 opt-outs will continue to be respected until the Department of Health and Social Care conducts a consultation with the National Data Guardian on their removal.


Type 2 opt-out (National Data Opt-out): information held by NHS Digital

Previously patients could tell the practice if they did not want us, NHS Digital, to share confidential patient information that we collect from across the health and care service for purposes other than individual care. This was called a type 2 opt-out.  The national data opt-out has replaced type 2 opt-outs. GP practices must no longer use the type 2 opt-out codes to record a patient’s opt-out choice as they are no longer collected or processed.

The type 2 opt-out was replaced by the national data opt-out. Type 2 opt-outs recorded on or before 11 October 2018 have been automatically converted to national data opt-outs.


Patients who previously had a type 2 opt-out

Where a patient had a type 2 opt-out registered on or before 11 October 2018, this was automatically converted to a national data opt-out and if they were aged 13 or over they were sent a personal letter explaining the change and a handout with more information about the national data opt-out.

Patients can be reassured that their choices will continue to be respected. If they want to change their choice, they can use the national data opt-out service to do this.


Guidance to prevent use of type 2 opt-out codes and identify if they have been used in error

Follow the guidance for the clinical system you use in your GP practice.

TPP SystmOne: guidance on invalid type 2 codes

EMIS Web: guidance on invalid type 2 codes

Vision: guidance on invalid type 2 codes

Microtest: guidance on invalid type 2 codes


Sharing your records: your personal information

Information about you is used in a number of ways by the NHS and social care services to support your personal care and to improve health and social care services for everyone.
The NHS Digital (NHSD) is the national NHS organisation with a legal responsibility to collect data as people make use of NHS and social care services. The data is used both at a local level and nationally to help with planning, managing your care, supporting research into new treatments, identifying trends and issues and so forth, and is used to try to make services better for all.
You can, however, choose not to have information about you shared or used for any purpose beyond providing your own treatment or care.

Your right to opt out

You can choose not to have anything that could identify you shared beyond your GP practice (Type 1 objection). You can also choose for the NHSD not to share information it collects from all health providers any further (previously known as Type 2 objection, now National Data Opt-out).
If you have previously told your GP practice that you don’t want the NHSD to share your personal confidential information for purposes other than your own care and treatment, your opt-out will have been implemented by the NHSD from July 31 2022. It will remain in place unless you change it.

You can find more information about how the HSCIC handles your information and choices and how it manages your opt-out on the HSCIC website