All Nurses' Health Study data (including questionnaire responses, medical information, and name and address information) are kept strictly confidential. We never release individual information about any participant to anyone for any reason, period. We do not sell, rent, or lend our mailing list to any other group. Only senior Channing Division of Network Medicine staff members, who perform updates to the file and generate questionnaire or follow-up mailings, have access to the name and address file. The Nurses' Health Study complies with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations concerning the storage and sharing of data. To protect your answers to our questionnaires, each member of the cohort is assigned a unique ID number that is printed on paper questionnaires and used as a username for the Web-based survey. The ID allows us to match your current responses with your questionnaire data from previous years, without using your name or address to identify it.


Federal research regulations require us to include the following information. There are no direct benefits to you from participating in this study. The risk of breach of confidentiality associated with participation in this study is very small. Your choice to participate in this study is completely voluntary and you may decline or withdraw at any time without penalty. You may skip any question you do not wish to answer. You will not receive monetary compensation for participating. If you have any questions regarding your rights as a research participant you are encouraged to call a representative of the Human Subjects Committee at the Brigham and Women's Hospital at (857) 282-1900.