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Fit Note Data Extraction


From February 2016, the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) will begin to collect anonymous data from our clinical system on patients who have been issued with a fit note. This information is required by the HSCIC under section 259(1) of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. In line with section 259(5) of the Act, all general practices in England must comply with this requirement and provide information to the HSCIC in the form, manner and period specified in this Data Provision Notice. This Notice is issued in accordance with the procedure published as part of the HSCIC duty under Section 259(8). This will include any Fit Notes issued from December 2014. Data will be collected every eight weeks until August 2018 when this data extraction will be reviewed.

The following anonymised data on the use of fit notes is being provided to the HSCIC on behalf of Department of Health, and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP):

    • how many computer-generated fit notes are issued

    • how many patients are recorded as ‘unfit’ or ‘maybe fit’ for work

    • fit note duration

    • gender

    • health condition (less common health conditions will not be published to ensure patients cannot be identified)

    • location, including Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) areas

    • whether workplace adaptations are recommended

This will enable the DWP to undertake research analysis to inform policy relating to employment and sickness absence, including evaluation of Fit for Work.

You may want to prevent confidential information about you from being shared or used for any purpose other than providing your care. If you do not want information that identifies you to be shared outside your GP practice, please inform the practice and we will make a note of this in your medical record.

This will prevent your confidential information from being used other than in special circumstances required by law, such as a public health emergency. This is known as a type 1 objection.

The HSCIC also makes national collections of information from other places where you receive care, such as hospitals and community services. They only release this information in identifiable form where there is legal approval to do so. You can opt out of this identifiable information leaving the HSCIC for purposes beyond your direct care. This is known as a type 2 objection. The only exceptions to this are very rare circumstances, such as a civil emergency or a public health emergency.

Further information can be found at:
Patient information on plans for collecting anonymous fit note data

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