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Opening hours

Weekdays: Monday-Thursday 6pm to 2am

Weekend: Friday 6pm-Monday 6am

This service is for people in Scotland



This policy is available in other languages.

Breathing Space ( is owned and operated by NHS 24 on behalf of NHS Scotland and the Scottish Government.

NHS 24 are committed to ensuring privacy is protected and that users can be assured that any data will only be used in accordance with the privacy requirements outlined in this policy.

This policy outlines:

  • what data we collect about you when you access this website or the Breathing Space helpline
  • how we collect this data
  • how we store this data securely
  • who we share it with
  • how you can access it

Data protection and security

For the purposes of the data protection legislation, NHS 24 are data controllers for personal data collected, stored and shared by Breathing Space. Our registration number is Z8707451.

Read our Data Protection Notice


This policy is compliant with the relevant data protection legislation and we’re committed to compliance procedures that demonstrate this.

Data collection

The types of data we collect will depend on how you access and use this website or the Breathing Space helpline.

Breathing Space deals with personal and special category (sensitive) data as classified under the relevant data protection legislation such as the UK General Data Protection Regulations (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018.

Processing your information

NHS 24 processes your information under a legal basis defined in the data protection legislation. NHS 24 considers there are several legal bases such as:

  • the use of your personal data is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in us
  • processing is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject or of another natural person

When we use more sensitive ‘special category’ types of personal information which includes health information then our legal basis is usually that the use is necessary for the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services, amongst others. Where it is deemed appropriate NHS 24 will share all relevant information with the appropriate organisations.


Before the chat begins we will ask you some prechat questions like your name, nickname, age range, gender and health board (location). This information will help us build a relationship with you.

The system will also capture your Internet Protocol (IP) address, this will be deleted immediately along with the webchat after your chat ends.

Typically, under article 16 of the UK GDPR you have a right to rectification, however as the Breathing space webchat is deleted immediately after the interaction this right cannot be exercised.

After your session you’ll also have the option to give feedback on your experience.

Find out more about how we manage the data collected by cookies

Audio recording of calls

Your call will not be recorded if you call Breathing Space direct.

If we transfer your call to NHS 24 or Emergency Services, they will record your call from the point contact is made. Likewise, if you call NHS 24 or Emergency Services and your call is transferred to Breathing Space, it will be recorded.

Call monitoring

Occasionally, calls may be monitored by a supervisor for the purpose of development and training of Breathing Space advisors and other mental health staff. The call may be reviewed as a means to give feedback on the call and support the advisor.

We do this to make sure all Breathing Space calls are safe, appropriate and in the interests of callers.

What information is collected?

Breathing Space is funded by the Scottish Government Health Department and as part of our work we collect some information during calls and webchats. We will not collect any personal information that identifies who you are but we may record some information we come to know through the course of the conversation (such as your age, gender, sexuality, beliefs, ethnicity etc).

What is the information used for?

We use this information to learn about whether we reach all groups in Scotland, or whether some groups are excluded; something we work very hard to avoid. We’ll document the main reason for your call or webchat so we know the types of things people want to talk to us about.

We also use the information to help plan our service in future. This includes being able to train our staff and being open to people about the type of calls and webchats we get.

Loss and misuse of data

We take appropriate technical and organisational precautions to prevent the loss, misuse or alteration of your personal data.

Data security

As Breathing Space is delivered by NHS 24, we adhere to all data security standards and protocols that apply to the NHS in Scotland.

In addition, all systems that operate as part of Breathing Space have had a detailed system security assessment in line with nationally recommended standards.

Read our Data Protection Notice

Disclosure checks

At NHS 24, all Breathing Space staff undergo Disclosure Scotland checks prior to employment.

Sharing your data

Any data we collect will only be shared for the purpose of:

  • if the caller gives agreement for onward referral
  • for uses or disclosures required by law
  • where there is a serious risk to someone’s life or health
  • where we need to protect the safety and wellbeing of staff


Any further privacy or data protection enquiries should be directed to:

The Data Protection Officer
Aurora House

3 Aurora Avenue


G81 1BF

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Breathing Space is available for anyone in Scotland over the age of 16. Childline can provide help and advice about a wide range of issues on 0800 1111 or

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