OPC can provide anonymous OPCRD data to internal and external organisations for research, quality improvement and other purposes, subject to compliance with our data governance framework, licensing and fees.

The NHS Health Research Authority (NHS HRA) has approved OPCRD for clinical research purposes (REC reference: 20/EM/0148).

The Anonymous Data Ethics Protocols and Transparency (ADEPT) committee, an independent body of experts and regulators, has been commissioned by the Respiratory Effectiveness Group (REG) to govern the standards of research conducted on internationally recognised databases, including OPCRD. The committee comprises scientists with statistical and epidemiological experience, members with specific OPCRD-related expertise, independent clinical experts and lay members adhering to UK standards.

Any research project conducted on OPCRD data needs to be reviewed and ethically approved by the ADEPT committee prior to any data being accessed. The ADEPT committee will be responsible for reviewing applicant study protocols for scientific quality. OPC provides additional resource for making or assisting with such applications on the customer’s behalf, if requested.

All research using OPCRD must be registered on established study databases such as the European Network of Centres for Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacovigilance (ENCePP).

Anonymous Data

Patient level data is de-identified ‘at source’.

The patients’ personal identifiers such as name, date of birth and street address are not extracted by the data extraction tools and remain at the GP practice.

Data transferred and held in OPCRD is fully anonymous.

Patient Consent

OPC respects patients’ requests to opt-out of data sharing.

Options available in the GP EHR system allow for selection of an individual patient and for that patient to be flagged as opting out of the data sharing and OPCRD extraction. If this option is selected, the patient’s data will not be extracted by OPCRD for research or for data linkage.

OPCRD also reviews and respects clinical codes that flag patient objections to their data being used for various purposes by not collecting this data.