In health care, the primary source of data is through clinical care delivery to patients. When this data is used outside of the general practice setting, for purposes other than which it was originally collected, it is referred to as 'secondary use of data'. Such secondary use in health care includes clinical analysis and research, quality measurement, public health planning and decision making, and operational review. It should be noted that whilst secondary use of health data can highlight issues in the quality of primary source data and provide an avenue to quality improvement, it cannot affect the quality of the original data.
The RACGP has developed the below resource on 'Secondary use of general practice data', which provides decision-making support to assist you and your practice staff to decide whether it is appropriate to release de-identified healthcare data at the request of an external organisation.