Information Sharing / the National Opt-out programme

Information Sharing – Sharing Your GP Record

Caring by sharing – supporting your healthcare at all times

Many people think their GP Record is available to all healthcare professionals involved in their care; but this is not generally the case. It is very common that each healthcare professional you see keeps a separate electronic record about you. This can mean important information may not be communicated between health services as well as it could be.

From time to time it is therefore helpful for us to be able to share information about your health and care requirements with other health organisations that are providing you with direct healthcare. Across Nottinghamshire we are introducing a local GP Record sharing model which will allow us to make relevant medical information from your GP Record available to other healthcare professionals at the point of need when they are providing care for you. However you will be asked for consent at the point of contact for your GP information to be viewed by a care professional outside your GP practice.

You will always be asked for your explicit consent before healthcare professional accesses your GP Record. If you say “No” the care professional will not be able to see your medical information. However there may be exceptional/emergency situations (e.g. if you were unconscious) where a health professional may access your GP record if deemed in your best interests to provide care.

Examples of organisations that may access your GP health information include Out of Hours Teams, Walk in Centres, Hospitals /A&E Departments and Community Healthcare Teams.

Making your GP record available in this way is designed to ensure that the healthcare professionals looking after you have the most relevant up to date information to enable them to provide you with the most appropriate care. It may also mean that you won’t have unnecessary tests, have to repeat information or be given drugs that you may be allergic to for example.

If you wish to only make certain parts of your GP record available and not all of it then you can ask for sections of your GP Record to be marked as ‘Private’. Private information will never be shared unless it is required by law or you give permission.

Please be assured your personal and sensitive health information will be kept confidential and secure at all times and only be used for your direct care purposes.

We would encourage everyone to make their GP Record available in case they need to be seen in an emergency or Out of Hours. If you have certain health conditions or go to hospital a lot then you should definitely make your record available.

You can download the consent form here.


How information about you helps us to provide better care

Information about you and the care you receive is shared, in a secure system, by  healthcare staff to support your treatment and care.

It is important that we, the NHS, can use this information to plan and improve  services for all patients. We would like to link information from all the different  places where you receive care, such as your GP, hospital and community service, to help us provide a full picture.  This will allow us to compare the care you  received in one area against the care you received in another, so we can see what  has worked best.

Information such as your postcode and NHS number, but not your name, will  be used to link your records in a secure system, so your identity is protected.  Information which does not reveal your identity can then be used by others, such  as researchers and those planning health services, to make sure we provide the  best care possible for everyone.

How your information is used and shared is controlled by law and strict rules are  in place to protect your privacy.  We need to make sure that you know this is happening and the choices  you have.


Can I opt out? 

If you are happy for your information to be shared you do not need to do anything. There is no form to fill in and nothing to sign and you can change your mind at any time.

To opt oit please write to the practice manager and explain that you wish to descent to having your data included in the care data process. We will then document it in your records to ensure your data will not be used.


Where can I get more information?

The NHS has produced a care data leaflet and FAQs sheet

You can also get further information from the website at 

Your Data Matters to the NHS

Information about your health and care helps us to improve your individual care, speed up

diagnosis, plan your local services and research new treatments.

In May 2018, the strict rules about how this data can and cannot be used were strengthened. The NHS is committed to keeping patient information safe and always being clear about how it is used.

You can choose whether your confidential patient information is used for research and planning.

To find out more visit: