Privacy Notice – Evaluation of the Distress Brief Intervention

An intervention called “Distress Brief Intervention” (DBI) is being used by a range of health, police and other groups in Scotland. This is a way of helping people who are in emotional distress by trying to make their first contact with the health services or police as caring as possible. It then offers further support over the next two weeks, if required.  The DBI intervention is being independently evaluated by a team of researchers from the University of Stirling, led by Edward Duncan.  The team is working in collaboration with Joanne Maclean at ScotCen, a social research organisation, Chris White of the Mental Health Foundation and Helen Mason at Glasgow Caledonian University. The research team is working on behalf of the Scottish Government who would like to find out what the DBI intervention is doing well and how it can be improved.

This privacy notice explains how your personal data collected through evaluation are used and handled.

For the purposes of this evaluation, the Scottish Government is the data controller. The Lawful Basis for collecting this information is it is a public task.

How we got your details?

You have been asked to participate as you have been involved in either the Level 1 and/or Level 2 provision of the DBI.  No personal details will have been shared with the research team without your full agreement.

What happens to the information you provide?

Your answers are treated with care and with full respect for your privacy.  The information is used for statistical and research purposes only and is dealt with in accordance with data protection legislation.  We will not publish results in a form that can reveal your identity.

Only the research team will have access to your personal data, and your data will not be shared with any third parties.

The DBI Programme hold some personal data for statistical purposes to deliver a better service. Should you agree to take part in the evaluation, some non-identifiable data may be shared with the research team for the evaluation by NHS National Services Scotland. Information that could identify you will be removed before sharing with the research team and replaced with an anonymous ID number.

How long your information is stored for?

All responses and written transcripts of interviews and focus groups are stored securely and confidentially under the terms of data protection legislation.  Information will be stored securely by the University of Stirling and ScotCen Social Research until the end of the research period in November 2020. All information will be stored by the Scottish Government for 5 years from the end of the research.

Your rights

Taking part in the research is voluntary.  You are free to withdraw from any part of the research at any time, and you do not have to answer all the questions.  However, once your data has been anonymised and incorporated into a summary of data for publication or presentation, it might not be possible for it to be extracted and withdrawn

Data protection legislation gives rights to individuals in respect of the personal data that organisations hold about them. These include the right to:

  • access a copy of the information an organisation holds about them;
  • object to processing that is likely to cause or is causing damage or distress;
  • prevent processing for direct marketing;
  • object to decisions being taken by automated means;
  • have inaccurate personal data rectified, blocked, erased or destroyed in certain circumstances; and
  • claim compensation for damages caused by a breach of the legislation.

How to contact us

More information for those taking part is available at If you have a concern about the way we handle the information you provide as part of the survey you can either contact us directly or contact the Data Protection Officer:

If you are unhappy with the way your personal data  is being processed, you can report it to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) at or by calling the ICO helpline on 0303 123 1113.