Data linkages: explore the evolution of healthcare records in research

Health researchers are increasing looking to data linkage to examine the wider impacts of health. Data linkage is the joining of two or more independent databases that share a variable at an individual record level – for example, someone’s GP record and their hospital record will share a unique ‘NHS number’. This animation created by a multidisciplinary team at the NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) and funded by MRC Mental Health Data Pathfinder award, illustrates the process of data linkage and the benefits for researchers. It is hoped that the video can be a useful tool in Patient and Public Involvement and beneficial to other organisations conducting health linkages.

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