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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S5W-30731
Asked by: Anas Sarwar, Glasgow, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 16 July 2020


To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S5W-29956 by Jeane Freeman on 15 July 2020, whether it will answer the question that was asked in relation to whether it has allowed access to COVID-19-related health data, including patients' personal medical information, to any third party and, if so, (a) what data, (b) to whom and (c) for what reason.

Current status: Answered by Jeane Freeman on 12 August 2020


The Scottish Government takes the privacy and security of health data, including patients personal medical information, very seriously and has ensured that the NHS has stringent processes in place governing access to all data, including Covid-19 related health data. The process for overseeing research access to data is overseen by the Public Benefits and Privacy Panel (PBPP).

Information about the PBPP and a full current list of approved applications as at August 2020, including those from third parties, can be accessed at This list provides a lay summary of each individual application, including the purpose of the use of data.

For other uses of Covid-19 health data, it is possible for applicants to request access directly with individual data controllers, either via the regional safe havens or directly to the data controllers. All providers of health & care (for example individual health boards and individual GP practices) are registered data controllers who are legally responsible for the data they hold, and for how it is shared. The Scottish Government does not hold a central register of these data sharing activities.