Using your data in our research

Using your data

Protecting your information

Our research is only possible because patients, families, carers and the public take part.

Using data collected from you, or about you or about whole populations of people with similar diseases or characteristics as you is an essential part of our research. We understand that sharing your data with us is an important decision.

So we make sure that at every stage of our research, we protect your privacy, confidentiality and dignity. 

Our researchers are specially trained, qualified and authorised to work with your data. We handle and store data in the most secure ways possible. We will only use your data for clincal research.

We will only use your personal data with the proper approvals, regulations and safeguards in place. In order to use your data we will work in one of the following ways:

  • Ask you to agree (consent) to take part in a research trial and explain to you how your data will be used
  • Ask the independent Confidentiality Advisory Group (CAG) for approval of our research where it ius not possible to ask for indivuals to give their agreement (consent) 
  • Anonymise the data (to make sure that an individual cannot be identified) to enable us to do research on a bigger scale, with information from thousands of people

More information about using your data in research

The video above summarises how the NHS uses data to save lives and improve treatment and care; we are grateful to the Understanding Patient Data initiative for these resources.

You will find more information and resources on the Understanding Patient Data website.

Our commitment to you

At NUH we make the following commitments about the data we keep about you and the way that we protect it. We will:

  • Keep the right information to provide services and fulfil our legal responsibilities to you
  • Keep your records safe, secure and accurate
  • Only keep your information for as long as necessary
  • Collect, store and use the information you provide to the data protection standards and the laws that govern data protection
  • Comply with the NUH Privacy Policy and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which requires that the way we manage your personal data is fair, lawful and transparent.

Excellence in data analytics

We are working with our partners in the University of Nottingham to develop the skills and capabilities to analyse extremely large amounts of data for research.

We are also working nationally as part of information collaborations and new developments in research data to improve healthcare across the country.  

New research into breast cancer

Using Artifical Intelligence to help in the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer

Our world-leading researchers from NUH and the University of Nottingham are using Artifical Intelligence (AI) to develop new approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer.

Using these advanced techniques allows the team to look at large amounts of data from patients over many years including tissue and blood samples, as well as some information from the patient records.

If you have been treated for breast cancer at NUH (Queen's Medcial Centre and Nottingham City Hospital) between 1976 and 2017, this research may include your data.

For more information

Please read and download the information leaflet which explains more about this research, how data will be used, the safeguards that are in place to protect your data and how to contact the research team.

Click on the highlighted text below to read the information.

Information Leaflet - Using AI To Help In The Diagnosis & Treatment of Breast Cancer - v5.pdf [pdf] 1MB

Sharing data for research

Sharing data for research

By bringing together small amounts of data from many thousands of patients, health researchers and scientists can look for patterns across the population. This type of data analysis can be used to help:

  • understand more about disease risks and causes
  • improve diagnosis
  • develop new treatments and prevent disease
  • plan NHS services
  • improve patient safety

How the NHS uses data for research

How the NHS uses data for research in the UK

The Health Research Authority (HRA) is the national body which protects and promotes the interests of patients and the public in health and social care research.

The HRA provides information about how data is used for research in the UK. You can find details of this information online, on the HRA website.

You can also read and download a leaflet produced by the HRA which explains how patient data is used for research using this link:

Choose how your data is used

Choose how your data is used

You can choose if your health data is used for clinical research or for NHS and social care planning. Find out about how health data is used nationally and about your choices on the NHS website.

Data Opt Out

You can choose how your data is used by the NHS for planning and clinical research.

Find out more about the Data Opt Out on the NHS Digital website.

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