Privacy and public health

Buckinghamshire Council is responsible for improving the health of its residents.

This includes a wide range of activities such as:

  • reducing the risk of poor development in babies
  • keeping school children healthy
  • helping build emotional resilience in our young people
  • reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, dementia, diabetes, falls, obesity and sexually transmitted infections

Why we collect information about you

We use information from many sources, for example:

  • NHS Digital
  • Office for National Statistics
  • commissioning support units
  • GPs and clinical commissioning groups
  • hospitals

We also use information from other providers to help us to better understand the pattern of births, ill health and mortality in Buckinghamshire.

By using information about births, deaths and the health care needs of our residents we are able to plan and deliver better health services, monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of these services more thoroughly and engage in better financial planning. This will ensure that our services protect and improve the health, mental health and wellbeing of our residents.

We are responsible for protecting the information we hold about you and ensuring that we use it in a way that is fair and lawful.

The information we collect about you

This information we collect could be:

  • personal - which includes information such as NHS number, postcode, date of birth
  • anonymised - which does not include personal identifiable data

Our legal authority to use personal information is granted under Section 42(4) of the Statistics and Registration Services Act (2007) as amended by Section 287 of the Health and Social Care Act (2012) and Regulation 3 of the Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002.

We use the following information about births and deaths.


  • age of mother at birth of child
  • address and postcode of usual residence of mother
  • marital status of mother
  • country of birth of mother and father
  • postcode and establishment type where birth occurred
  • date of birth of child
  • cause of stillbirth and gestation
  • date of registration
  • sex
  • birth weight of child
  • multiple birth indicator
  • NHS number of child


  • country of place of birth
  • address and postcode of usual residence
  • postcode and establishment type where death occurred
  • GP practice code where deceased was registered
  • date of registration
  • sex
  • date of birth
  • date of death
  • maiden name
  • name of certifier
  • name of coroner
  • cause of death
  • occupation
  • NHS number

We need to combine datasets in order to enhance and verify the statistics we produce, or to investigate specific issues of concern.  For example, data related to deaths might be used to produce an audit of suicides by linking these data to hospital and/or social care records.

As part of a programme to safeguard children, we might link data about births to child and social care data.

How we protect information

Information will be collected and used in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018 and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Data is accessed via a secure N3 connection, and held securely in folders with restricted access on our information technology network. This is done in accordance with government standards on security and data storage. 

We will only share your personal information when we:

  • are permitted
  • are required to by law
  • have your consent to do so

When necessary we share data with our partners and service providers, such as government bodies, the police, health and social care organisations and educational establishments.  No personal information is published or sold to other third parties.

Data in the form of numbers and rates based on fewer than five individuals are not included in published reports in order to maintain confidentiality and anonymity.  Anonymised data is published in the Annual Public Health Report and Joint Strategic Needs Assessment which you can find on the Buckinghamshire Council website.

Your rights

You have the right to opt out of Buckinghamshire Council Public Health receiving or holding your personal information.

There are occasions where service providers will have a legal duty to collect and share information, for example for safeguarding or criminal issues. The process for opting out will depend on what the specific data is and to what programme it relates.


If you would like to opt out, require further information or have any concerns about our use of your personal data, contact our Data Protection Officer:

Buckinghamshire Council
The Gateway
Gatehouse Road
HP19 8FF

Email: [email protected]

More details about how information about you is used to improve our residents' health and the services provided by Buckinghamshire Council and the General Data Protection Regulation can be found in the corporate privacy policy.

Further information and independent advice can be found on the Information Commissioner’s Office website.